Vismodegib is used to treat basal cell carcinoma (a type of skin cancer) in people with cancer that has spread to other parts of the body. Vismodegib is also used to treat basal cell carcinoma that cannot be treated with surgery or radiation or has come back after surgery. Vismodegib is in a class of medications called hedgehog pathway inhibitors. It works by blocking the action of a protein that signals cancer cells to multiply. This helps stop or slow the spread of cancer cells and may help shrink tumors.
Side Effects Of Vismodegib
Vismodegib may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- muscle spasms
- joint pain
- hair loss
- change in how things taste or loss of taste
- decreased appetite
- weight loss
- missed menstrual periods
- Vismodegib may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Warnings & Precautions
Before taking vismodegib:
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to vismodegib, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in vismodegib capsules. Ask your pharmacist or check the Medication Guide for a list of the ingredients.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: antacids; certain antibiotics such as azithromycin (Z-Pak, Zithromax), clarithromycin (Biaxin, in Prevpac), and erythromycin (E.E.S., Eryc, Ery-Tab, Erythrocin, PCE); a medication for indigestion, heartburn, or ulcers such as cimetidine (Tagamet), famotidine (Pepcid), and ranitidine (Zantac); and proton-pump inhibitors such as dexlansoprazole (Dexilant), lansoprazole (Prevacid, in Prevpac), omeprazole (Prilosec, Zegerid), pantoprazole (Protonix), and rabeprazole (AcipHex). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. Many other medications may also interact with vismodegib, so be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you are taking, even those that do not appear on this list.
- do not breast-feed while you are taking vismodegib and for 7 months after your treatment.
Vismodegib comes as a capsule to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without food. To help you remember to take vismodegib, take it at around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take vismodegib exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Swallow the capsules whole; do not split, chew, or crush them.
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
All information has been provided courtesy of MedLinePlus from the National Library of Medicine and from the FDA.