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Information of Lomustine

Lomustine is used alone or in combination with other medicines to treat brain tumors, Hodgkin's disease, and other kinds of cancer. This medicine belongs to the group of medicines known as alkylating agents.

Lomustine interferes with the growth of cancer cells, which are eventually destroyed. Since the growth of normal body cells may also be affected by lomustine, other effects may occur. Some of these may be serious and must be reported to your doctor. Other effects (e.g., hair loss) may not be serious, but may cause concern. Some effects may not occur for months or years after the medicine is used.


This medication is used to treat various types of cancer. Lomustine belongs to a class of drugs known as alkylating agents. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells.

How to use Lomustine

Take this medication by mouth as a single dose as directed by your doctor, usually once every 6 weeks. Your dose may consist of 2 or more different strengths/colors of capsules. To prevent nausea and vomiting, take this medication on an empty stomach at least 1 hour before or 2 to 3 hours after a meal with a full glass of water (8 ounces/240 milliliters) unless your doctor directs you otherwise. Swallow the capsules whole.

Lomustine Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin
  • signs of infection--fever, chills, sore throat, blisters or ulcers in your mouth, red or swollen gums, trouble swallowing


Animals with anemia, bone-marrow depression, decreased pulmonary function, infection, and decreased liver and kidney function should receive lomustine only when the benefits outweigh the potential risks.

The occurrence of neutropenia is a dose-limiting factor for lomustine. The nadir for thrombocytopenia and neutropenia usually is at seven to ten days post therapy. Hematologic changes may be delayed and cumulative, although more commonly they are resolved before the next treatment. Platelet counts should be performed before each treatment.

Lomustine can cause chronic irreversible liver failure in dogs. Liver enzymes should be evaluated prior to each treatment. Manifestation of hepatotoxicity may be delayed by as long as four weeks after cessation of treatment. Hepatotoxicity has not been reported in cats.

Because Lomustine is excreted by the kidneys, dose modification may be needed in animals with pre-existing renal disease. Glucosuria may be an early sign of renal tubular damage.