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What Is Cisplatin?

What Is Cisplatin?

What Is Cisplatin?

Cisplatin is a chemotherapy drug used to treat testicular, ovarian, bladder, head and neck, and non-small cell lung cancer.

How cisplatin is given

You usually have cisplatin in the chemotherapy day unit or during a stay in hospital. A chemotherapy nurse will give it to you. It may be given with other chemotherapy drugs or with radiotherapy. During treatment, you usually see a cancer doctor, a chemotherapy nurse or a specialist nurse. This is who we mean when we mention doctor or nurse in this information.Before or on the day of treatment, a nurse or person trained to take blood (phlebotomist) will take a blood sample from you. This is to check that it is okay for you to have chemotherapy.

How to use Cisplatin

This medication is usually given by injection into a vein by a health care professional. The dosage is based on your medical condition, body size, and response to therapy. Courses of cisplatin treatment should not be given more often than once every 3 to 4 weeks. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

Risk of infection

Cisplatin can reduce the number of white blood cells in your blood. This will make you more likely to get an infection. Your white blood cells start to reduce seven days after treatment and are usually at their lowest 10 to 14 days after. When the number of white blood cells is low, it’s called neutropenia.

Contact the hospital straight away on the contact number you’ve been given if:

  • your temperature goes over 37.5°C (99.5°F)
  • you suddenly feel unwell, even with a normal temperature
  • you have symptoms of an infection.
  • Symptoms of an infection include:
  • feeling shivery
  • a sore throat
  • a cough

Possible side effects of cisplatin

We explain the most common side effects of cisplatin here. But we don’t include all the rare ones that are unlikely to affect you.You may get some of the side effects we mention, but you are very unlikely to get all of them. If you are having other chemotherapy drugs as well, you may have some side effects that we don’t list here. Always tell your doctor or nurse about the side effects you have.Your doctor can prescribe drugs to help control some side effects. It is very important to take them exactly as your nurse or pharmacist has explained. This means they will be more likely to work better. Your nurse will give you advice about managing your side effects. After your treatment is over, the side effects will start to improve.

Serious and life-threatening side effects

Sometimes cancer drugs can result in very serious side effects, which rarely may be life threatening. Your cancer doctor and nurse can explain the risk of these side effects to you.Before using cisplatin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to carboplatin; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Precaution

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney disease, decreased bone marrow function/blood cell disorders (e.g., anemia, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia), hearing problems, mineral imbalance (low blood levels of sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, phosphate), numbness/tingling of the hands/feet, kidney stones, gout.

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