Platinol-Cisplatin

Patient Education Quick Reference Guide Diablo Valley Oncology/Hematology Medical Group Phone Number: 925-677-5041

WARNING Allergic reactions: Rarely, cisplatin may cause allergic reactions during administration. These allergic reactions can cause swelling in the face, cough, wheezing, chest tightness, a decrease in blood pressure and an increase in heart rate. Your doctor or healthcare provider will watch you carefully during and after the administration of cisplatin to make sure that you do not experience any allergic reactions. If an allergic reaction occurs it is treatable with medications. Blood related problems: Cisplatin can cause serious decreases in your red blood cell, white blood cell and platelet levels, which can cause infections, anemia, bruising and bleeding. The risk of this occurring increases as the total amount of cisplatin used over time increases (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication). Ear related problems: This medication can cause damage to the ear, which can result in hearing or balance problems. The risk of this occurring increases as the total amount of cisplatin used over time increases. Let your doctor or healthcare provider know if you experience any ringing in the ears or loss of hearing. Gastrointestinal related problems: Like many other chemotherapy medications, cisplatin can cause nausea and vomiting (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication). Kidney related problems: Cisplatin can cause severe changes in the ability of your kidneys to work normally, particularly as the total amount of cisplatin used over time increases (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication). Uses For This Medication
  • Cisplatin is used alone or in combination with other chemotherapy medications to treat adults with many different types of cancer including testicular cancer, ovarian cancer, bladder cancer, head and neck cancers, esophageal cancer, breast cancer, melanoma, anal cancer, cervical cancer, carcinoma of unknown primary, endometrial cancer, fallopian tube cancer, stomach cancer, Kaposi’s sarcoma, soft tissue sarcomas, osteosarcoma, penile cancer, peritoneal cancer, prostate cancer, retinoblastoma, thyroid cancer, vulvar cancer, Wilm’s tumor, kidney cancer, liver cancer, brain tumors, lung cancer, mesothelioma, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
  • This medication may also be given for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
  How This Medication Works Cisplatin is a chemotherapy medication that doesn’t allow cancer cells, also known as tumor cells, to divide and grow normally, which leads to tumor cell death. Benefits Of This Medication Cisplatin, alone or together with other chemotherapy medications, may slow down the growth of the tumor, or cancer. In addition, for some cancers, cisplatin may lengthen how long a person lives. Who Should Not Take This Medication You should not take this medication if you:
  • Are allergic to cisplatin or any other platinum-containing medication such as oxaliplatin (Eloxatin®) or carboplatin (Paraplatin®)
  • Have kidney problems
  • Have hearing problems
  • Have very low red blood cell, white blood cell, or platelet levels or if you have experienced bleeding problems. Your doctor or healthcare provider will check your blood before starting cisplatin to make sure that it is safe to start this medication.
  Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication

Blood related precautions

  • This medication may temporarily lower the number of red cells in your blood. This can increase your risk of anemia. If your red blood cell level becomes low, you may feel tired and weak. If your red blood cell level becomes too low, your doctor or healthcare provider may recommend that your treatment be delayed, that you receive a red blood cell transfusion, and/or you receive a medication to help increase the red cells in your blood.
  • This medication may temporarily reduce the number of platelets in your blood. This can increase your risk of bleeding. Contact your doctor or healthcare provider if you notice unusual bleeding or bruising, have black or tar-like stools, see blood in your urine, or develop pinpoint red spots on your skin. If your platelet levels become too low, your doctor or healthcare provider may recommend that your treatment be delayed, that you receive a platelet transfusion, and/or that you take medication to help increase the number of platelets in your blood. To lower your chance of bleeding, do not use aspirin, aspirin-containing medications, or aspirin-like medications (for example ibuprofen, naproxen). Use caution with sharp objects like razors and nail cutters, and avoid activities that can cause cuts, bumps and bruises.
  • This medication may temporarily reduce the number of germ fighting white blood cells in your blood. This can increase your risk of infection. Contact your doctor or healthcare provider promptly if you develop any signs of an infection such as fever, painful urination, chills or a sore throat that doesn’t go away. If your white blood cell levels become too low, your doctor or healthcare provider may recommend that your treatment be delayed and/or you receive medication to increase the number of white cells in your blood. To lower your risk of infection, stay away from crowds and people with colds or other illnesses, wash your hands with soap and water well and often, and brush and floss your teeth daily.
 

Gastrointestinal related precautions

This medication may cause two types of nausea and/or vomiting, acute and delayed. Acute nausea and/or vomiting occurs within the first 24 hours following chemotherapy treatment. Delayed nausea and/or vomiting usually starts 24 hours after treatment and can last for up to 3 to 7 days. Eat small frequent meals and bland foods (for example bananas, rice, apples, toast). If you are having moderate or severe vomiting, tell your doctor or healthcare provider. Nausea and vomiting can be treated with medications. Organ related precautions This medication can cause changes in the ability of your liver and/or kidneys to work normally. Your doctor or healthcare provider will check your liver and kidneys regularly, usually through blood tests, while you are on this medication to make sure that they are both working properly. If you have any liver or kidney problems before starting this medication, make sure that you tell your doctor or healthcare provider so that he or she can watch you carefully for possible problems or side effects.

Miscellaneous precautions

  • This medication can cause nerve problems. Symptoms can include numbness, pain or a burning feeling in the feet or hands, loss of reflexes, muscle weakness, and/or difficulty walking. Contact your doctor or healthcare provider if you experience new symptoms or if your symptoms get worse.
  • The development of leukemia has been reported in patients receiving cisplatin. The risk of developing leukemia appears to be higher in patients receiving cisplatin in combination with other chemotherapy medications and/or radiation.
  • Do not receive any immunizations (vaccinations) while on this medication without your doctor or healthcare provider’s approval. This medication can increase your risk of infection. For certain immunizations, you may develop the infection that the immunization is intended to prevent.
 

Patient specific precautions

  • Safety and effectiveness in the pediatric population has not been established though cisplatin is routinely used to treat many pediatric malignancies
  • Older patients receiving cisplatin may tend to experience some side effects more frequently than younger patients.
  Pregnancy and breastfeeding precautions
  • This medication may cause fetal harm. When taking this medication, you should use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy. Tell your doctor or healthcare provider right away if you or your spouse/partner becomes pregnant.
  • Cisplatin is excreted in breast milk. Since this medication may cause serious harmful reactions in infants, breastfeeding should be avoided.
  • This medication can cause sterility in both sexes. Notify your doctor or healthcare provider if you want to have children in the future.
  Medication and Food Interactions Before using this medication, tell your doctor or healthcare provider of all prescription or over-the-counter products you are taking, including dietary supplements or vitamins, herbal medicines and homeopathic remedies. Do not start or stop any medication without your doctor or healthcare provider’s approval. Possible interactions can occur with cisplatin and the following medications:
  • Bleomycin
  • Loop Diuretics (furosemide, bumetanide) that can cause hearing loss
  • Docetaxel
  • Ifosfamide
  • Lithium
  • Paclitaxel
  • Pyridoxine in combination with altretamine (Hexalen)
  • Phenytoin (Dilantin )
  • Medications that can cause kidney problems
  • Vinorelbine
  NOTE: This list may not include all medications that can have interactions with arsenic trioxide.  

Side Effects

  • All medications can cause side effects. However, not all patients will experience these side effects. In addition, other side effects not listed can also occur in some patients. You should call your doctor or healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns while you are on this medication.
  • You should contact your doctor or healthcare provider if you experience any side effect(s) which don’t go away, worsen, are serious in nature, or are worrisome to you.
  • Side effects can occur when cisplatin is given alone or together with other chemotherapy medications. The side effects listed below are those reported in patients who were treated with cisplatin alone.
 

More common side effects

  • Acute and delayed nausea and vomiting (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  • Taste changes including metallic taste of foods
  • Decreased red blood cell levels (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  • Decreased blood levels of sodium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorous and calcium
  • Hair loss
  • Tiredness (fatigue)
  • Changes in kidney function (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  • Sensation of pins and needles in hands and/or feet caused by irritation of nerves (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  Less common side effects
  • Loss of appetite, diarrhea
  • Decreased platelet and/or white blood cell levels (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  • Hearing loss or ringing in the ears ( See warning)
  Rare side effects This is not a complete list of the rare side effects reported with cisplatin. For a complete list, please talk with your doctor or healthcare provider about reviewing a copy of the package insert.
  • Allergic reactions (see Warning and Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  • Vision problems
  • Difficulty walking
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke, seizures
  • Liver problems (see Precautions To Be Aware Of Before Taking This Medication)
  • Muscle cramps
  • Rash
  How To Take This Medication
  • This medication is usually given by injection into a vein (IV) by a healthcare professional. This medication can be given in different doses depending on your weight, your type of condition and whether cisplatin is being given with other chemotherapy medications.
  • Before receiving cisplatin, you will be given IV fluids and medications to hydrate you and help your kidneys to flush the cisplatin through your body quickly.
  • Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, you should drink 2-3 quarts of fluid a day to help protect your kidneys from this medicine.
  • In the unlikely event of an overdose of this medication contact your doctor, your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222, or emergency services immediately.
  • Antiemetics, which are medications to help prevent and control nausea and vomiting, may be given before cisplatin either by mouth (orally) or by injection into a vein (IV). Following treatment, your doctor or healthcare provider may prescribe additional antiemetics which you may need to take for several days after treatment to prevent and control nausea and/or vomiting.
  • Your doctor or healthcare provider may also prescribe electrolyte supplements to help make up for low magnesium and potassium levels caused by cisplatin.
  Proper Storage
  • It is unlikely that you will need to store this medication. However, in the event that you do, the unopened containers should be stored at controlled room temperature. Keep in original package to protect from light.
  • Keep this medication out of the reach of children or pets.
  • Ask your doctor or healthcare provider how to dispose of any medication that you no longer use.