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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: Temodar

Generic Name: temozolomide (Pronunciation: TEM oh ZOE loe mide)

What is temozolomide (Temodar)?

Temozolomide interferes with the development of cancer cells, slowing their growth and spread in the body.

Temozolomide is used together with radiation therapy to treat certain types of brain tumor in adults.

Temozolomide is sometimes given after other cancer medications have been tried without successful treatment of the tumor.

Temozolomide may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of temozolomide (Temodar)?

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

Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • seizure (convulsions);
  • numbness or tingling on one side of your body;
  • signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, unusual weakness;
  • dry cough, feeling short of breath, weight loss, night sweats;
  • pain or burning when you urinate;
  • white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips; or
  • nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Less serious side effects may include:

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about temozolomide (Temodar)?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to temozolomide or to another cancer medication called dacarbazine (DTIC-Dome). Before taking temozolomide, tell your doctor if you have liver or kidney disease.

Do not use temozolomide if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby.

Do not open the temozolomide capsule, or use a pill that has been accidentally broken. The medicine from a crushed or broken pill can be dangerous if you accidentally inhale it, or if it gets in your eyes, mouth, or nose, or on your skin. If this occurs, wash your skin with soap and water or rinse your eyes with water. Ask your doctor or pharmacist how to safely handle and dispose of a broken tablet or capsule.

Temozolomide is often given together with radiation treatment, and then continued for several weeks or months after radiation treatment ends. There may be periods of time when you will take temozolomide for only a few days in a row and then wait another 2 to 4 weeks before you start a new treatment cycle and take it again. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.

Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results. The size, color, and number of temozolomide capsules you take may be different from time to time as your doctor adjusts your dose. Be sure you know the correct number of capsules to take and on which days to take them. Contact your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Taking temozolomide may increase your risk of developing certain types of bone marrow cancer. Talk with your doctor about your individual risk.

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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