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Abiraterone Acetate

Abiraterone Acetate

Abiraterone (Zytiga)

Find out what abiraterone is, how you have it and other important information about taking abiraterone for prostate cancer.

Abiraterone is a hormone therapy drug. It is a treatment for prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of your body.

You might have abiraterone if:

other hormone treatments are no longer working

you have had docetaxel chemotherapy

You might also have abiraterone as part of a clinical trial for early stage prostate cancer.

What Abiraterone Acetate is Used For:

Abiraterone acetate is indicated for use in combination with prednisone for the treatment of men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer who have already received prior chemotherapy containing docetaxel.

Note: If a drug has been approved for one use, physicians may elect to use this same drug for other problems if they believe it may be helpful.

How it works

Prostate cancer needs testosterone (male sex hormone) to grow. To make testosterone your body produces an enzyme called cytochrome p17.

Abiraterone blocks cytochrome p17 and stops your body from making testosterone. This can slow down the growth of your cancer or shrink it.

Side effect

  • joint swelling or pain
  • diarrhea
  • cough
  • sweating
  • hot flashes
  • weakness
  • swelling in your legs or feet
  • vomiting
  • high blood pressure
  • shortness of breath
  • urinary tract infection
  • bruising
  • anemia

Abiraterone Acetate Precautions:

Before starting abiraterone acetate treatment, make sure you tell your doctor about any other medications you are taking (including prescription, over-the-counter, vitamins, herbal remedies, etc.). Do not take aspirin, products containing aspirin unless your doctor specifically permits this.

Abiraterone acetate is currently not indicated for use in women. However, if abiraterone acetate is given to a woman, getting pregnant should be avoided and the woman should not breast feed.

Abiraterone acetate is currently not indicated for use in women. Abiraterone acetate should not be given to women who are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. Pregnancy category X (abiraterone acetate may cause fetal harm when given to a pregnant woman. If a woman becomes pregnant while taking abiraterone acetate, the medication must be stopped immediately and the woman given appropriate counseling).

It is not known if abiraterone acetate is excreted in semen, therefore, men should use a condom and another method of birth control during treatment and for 1 week following the last dose of abiraterone acetate.

Abiraterone Acetate Self-Care Tips:

Abiraterone acetate and prednisone are to be used together and neither medication should be interrupted or stopped unless your healthcare provider tells you to. Take the medication exactly as directed.

Take at the same time each day

Take on an empty stomach

You will need to continue receiving your LHRH/GnRH agonists injections (ie Zoladex®, Lupron®, Trelstar®, etc) throughout treatment with abiraterone acetate.

If you are experiencing hot flashes, wear light clothing, stay in a cool environment to try and reduce symptoms. Consult your healthcare provider if these worsen or become intolerable.

In general, drinking alcoholic beverages should be kept to a minimum or avoided completely. You should discuss this with your doctor.

Get plenty of rest.

Maintain good nutrition.

If you experience symptoms or side effects, be sure to discuss them with your health care team. They can prescribe medications and/or offer other suggestions that are effective in managing such problems.