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Abarelix (Injection)

Treats prostate cancer. This medicine was withdrawn from the US market in May 2005 and is available only to patients who are currently receiving the medicine.

Brand Name(s):

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not receive this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to abarelix. This medicine should not be given to women or children.

How to Use This Medicine:

Injectable, Injectable

  • Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given as a shot into one of your muscles.
  • You will receive this medicine in a clinic or hospital. A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
  • After you receive your injection, your doctor will need to watch you for any side effects. You will need to stay in the clinic for at least 30 minutes.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using medicines to treat an abnormal heart rhythm. These medicines include amiodarone (Cordarone®), bretylium, disopyramide (Norpace®), quinidine (Cardioquin®, Quinaglute®, Quinidex®), ibutilide (Corvert®), procainamide (Procan®, Procanabid®, Pronestyl®), or sotalol (Betapace®).
  • Tell your doctor if you are also using arsenic trioxide (Trisenox®), astemizole (Hismanal®), cisapride (Propulsid®), dofetilide (Tikosyn®), erythromycin (Erythro-Tab®), fluoxetine (Prozac®), moxifloxacin (Avalox®), probucol (Lorelco®), gatifloxacin (Tequin®), or sparfloxacin (Zagam®).
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you use medicine for depression (such as amitriptyline, imipramine, Norpramin®, Vivactil®). Also tell your doctor if you use any medicines to treat mental illness (such as haloperidol (Haldol®), mesoridazine (Serentil®), thioridazine (Mellaril®), or ziprasidone (Geodon?).

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • It is unlikely that a woman would receive this medicine. But you should know that this medicine can harm an unborn baby if it is given to the mother while she is pregnant.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have osteoporosis or an iron deficiency. Tell your doctor if you have ever had heart rhythm problems, or an abnormal EKG test of your heartbeat.
  • This medicine may stop working after you have been receiving it for a long time (up to one year). Your doctor may switch you to another treatment if this medicine becomes less effective.
  • This medicine does not work as well in people who weigh more than 225 pounds.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Dark-colored urine or pale stools.
  • Lightheadedness or fainting.
  • Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, pain in your upper stomach.
  • Yellow skin or eyes.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Breast swelling, pain, or tenderness.
  • Hot flushes.
  • Mild skin rash or itching.
  • Pain.
  • Trouble sleeping.

Last Updated: 6/12/2013

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