Carboplatin (patient information)
Carboplatin can cause a decrease in the number of blood cells in your bone marrow. Your doctor will order tests before, during, and after your treatment to see if your blood cells are affected by this drug.
About your treatment
Your doctor has ordered the drug carboplatin to help treat your illness. The drug is given by injection into a vein.
This medication is used to treat:
- ovarian carcinoma
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Carboplatin is in a class of drugs known as platinum-containing compounds; it slows or stops the growth of cancer cells in your body. The length of treatment depends on the types of drugs you are taking, how well your body responds to them, and the type of cancer you have.
Other uses for this medicine
Carboplatin also is used to treat certain types of lung cancer, testicular cancer, head and neck cancer, Wilms' tumor, brain tumors, bladder cancer, and retinoblastoma. Talk to your doctor about the possible risks of using this drug for your condition.
Before taking carboplatin:
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to carboplatin (Paraplatin) or any other platinum-containing compound such as cisplatin (Platinol, CDDP) or any other drugs.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially aspirin; medications that can cause hearing problems such as amikacin (Amikin),gentamicin (Garamycin, Jenamicin, others), kanamycin (Kantrex), neomycin (Mycifradin, Neo-fradin, Neo-Tabs), netilmicin (Netromycin), streptomycin, tobramycin (Nebcin, Tobrex, others), and others; and vitamins.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney disease and if you have ever taken platinum-containing compounds such as cisplatin (Platinol, CDDP).
- you should know that carboplatin may interfere with the normal menstrual cycle (period) in women and may stop sperm production in men. However, you should not assume that you cannot get pregnant or that you cannot get someone else pregnant. Women who are pregnant should tell their doctors before they begin taking this drug. You should not plan to have children while receiving chemotherapy or for a while after treatments. (Talk to your doctor for further details.) Use a reliable method of birth control to prevent pregnancy. Carboplatin may harm the fetus.
- tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. Because of the danger of serious side effects to your baby, you should stop nursing while taking carboplatin.
- do not have any vaccinations (e.g., measles or flu shots) without talking to your doctor.
- you should know that combinations of chemotherapy drugs can cause cancer later on. Talk to your doctor about the risks of taking carboplatin.
Minor side effects
Side effects from carboplatin are common and include:
- thinned or brittle hair
- loss of appetite or weight
- stomach pain
- nausea and vomiting
- changes in taste
- changes in vision
- numbness or tingling in the fingertips
Tell your doctor if either of these symptoms is severe or lasts for several hours:
- mouth blistering
Severe side effects
If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- red urine
- unusual bruising or bleeding
- black, tarry stools
- dizziness or feeling of faintness
- pain in your side or back
- shortness of breath or wheezing
- swelling of the feet or ankles
- hearing loss
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/MedWatch/report.htm] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.