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What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking erlotinib (Tarceva)?
You should not take erlotinib if you are allergic to it.
If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests:
FDA pregnancy category D. Do not take erlotinib if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Use effective birth control while you are taking this medication and for at least 2 weeks after your treatment ends.
It is not known whether erlotinib passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while taking erlotinib.
How should I take erlotinib (Tarceva)?
Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.
Take erlotinib on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after eating.
Do not crush an erlotinib tablet. The medicine from a crushed or broken pill can be dangerous if it gets on your skin. If this occurs, wash your skin with soap and water and rinse thoroughly.
To be sure this medication is helping your condition and not causing harmful effects, your blood will need to be tested often. This will help your doctor determine how long to treat you with erlotinib. Visit your doctor regularly.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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