Generic Name: deferasirox
Drug Class: kinase inhibitor
Tarceva is an oral prescription drug indicated as maintenance treatment for locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer that has not significantly progressed after four cycles of platinum-based first-line chemotherapy. It is also used to treat locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer after failure of at least one prior chemotherapy. Additionally, it is also given as first-line treatment for locally advanced, unresectable, or metastatic pancreatic cancer, together with gemcitabine.
Tarceva Dosage Forms
This is available in Tarceva 25 mg, 100 mg, and 150 mg tablets.
Tarceva Mechanism of Action
The exact mechanism of this medication as an antitumor is still unknown. However, it is thought to inhibit the intracellular phosphorylation of tyrosine kinase linked with EGFR or epidermal growth factor receptor.
How to Take Tarceva
Before you start taking this medication, it is necessary to read the drug information leaflet or medication guide given by a healthcare professional. You must not take any medication unless you have understood the uses and directions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for further medical advice or additional details.
This tablet is only meant to be taken by mouth. This is usually prescribed once a day, on an empty stomach. Take it one hour before or two hours after a meal. Swallow the tablet entirely and drink fluids right after. Splitting, crushing, or chewing this drug is not recommended.
Make a dosing schedule. Do not increase or decrease your dosage. You should not also take this oral drug more frequently than advised. Additionally, this tablet should not be handled by pregnant moms or those who are planning to get pregnant, as this drug can be absorbed through the lungs and skin.
Tarceva Side Effects
Mild & Common Side Effects:
-Eye redness, dryness, or irritation
-Muscle or joint pain
-Unusual eyelash growth
Severe Side Effects:
-Changes in the amount of urine
-Persistent nausea and vomiting
-Loss of appetite
-Severe abdominal pain
-Redness or swelling around the nails
-Easy bruising or bleeding
-New or worsening shortness or breath
Note that this is not a full/complete list of the side effects of Tarceva.
If you experience severe or persistent adverse reactions, discontinue medication and talk to your doctor or healthcare professional.
Warnings and Precautions when using Tarceva
Do not take this prescription drug if you have a known allergy to erlotinib or any inactive ingredients the tablet may contain. Always be on the lookout for serious allergy symptoms, such as trouble breathing, swelling of the face and neck, severe dizziness, swollen lymph nodes, and hives/itchiness. Stop using this medication immediately if this happens.
This medication may be contraindicated for people with a history of gastrointestinal diseases, liver disease, and kidney disease. Due to the possibility of drug interactions, you should mention all of your prescription and non-prescription medications, supplements, and herbal products.
This oral medication is known to increase the risk of stomach or intestinal bleeding. It is necessary to avoid smoking or drinking alcoholic beverages while on this treatment, for they contain substances that can further increase the risk of GI bleeding.
Pregnant moms must avoid this drug because of the harm that it can cause to unborn babies. You should also not get pregnant while taking this medication. For breastfeeding moms, it is unknown if it can pass into the breastmilk. Discuss all the possible risks with your healthcare provider.
How much does Tarceva cost?
You may check the list of prices on this page. Check the top of this description for your options.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What type of drug is Tarceva?
This oral medication is classified as a kinase inhibitor. It is used to manage non-small cell lung cancer and pancreatic cancer.
Is Tarceva chemotherapy drug?
This oral drug is not a chemotherapy agent. Rather, this is used as a targeted-cancer agent for advanced or metastatic NSCLC.
Does Tarceva rash go away?
Yes, the rash caused by this medication can be treated. You may use emollients and topical steroids to treat your rashes.
Is Tarceva effective?
Based on clinical trials, this medication has been proven to be effective. However, Tarceva effectiveness will also depend on how the patients respond to overall treatment.
Can Tarceva cause eye problems?
This type of drug may cause eye irritation and dryness. If these adverse reactions worsen or do not resolve, you must notify your doctor immediately.
Do I need a prescription for Tarceva?
This product must be purchased from a pharmacy with a valid prescription.