A number of medications may be prescribed for you if you have ovarian cancer. These will not treat the cancer, but treat some of the symptoms that you may have from the cancer or cancer treatments.
The information provided here is meant to give you a general idea about each of the medications listed below. Only the most general side effects are included, so ask your doctor if you need to take any special precautions. Use each of these medications as recommended by your doctor, or according to the instructions provided. If you have further questions about usage or side effects, contact your doctor.
Medications may help to either prevent or reduce side effects of treatment or to manage certain side effects once they occur. You can develop side effects from the treatment and/or from the cancer itself. Tell your doctor when you notice a new symptom, and ask him if any of these medications are appropriate for you.
Antinauseants, also called anti-emetics, are given to help treat nausea and vomiting that may be caused by chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery to treat cancer. Prochlorperazine can be taken by mouth, injection, or a suppository. Ondansetron and granisetron can be taken orally or as injections; metoclopramide is usually given by injection.
Possible side effects of prochlorperazine include:
Blurred vision, change in color vision, or difficulty seeing at night
Narcotics act on the central nervous system to relieve pain. These drugs can be very effective; however, they must be used with great caution because they can be mentally and/or physically addictive. If you are going to take one of these drugs for a long period of time, your doctor will closely monitor you.
Percocet is a combination medication. A narcotic analgesic and acetaminophen used together may provide better pain relief than either medicine used alone. In some cases, lower doses of each medicine are necessary to achieve pain relief.
During cancer treatment, blood cells can be destroyed along with cancer cells. Filgrastim helps your bone marrow make new white blood cells. White blood cells help your body fight infection. Therefore, filgrastim helps to reduce your risk of infection.
Epoetin helps your bone marrow to make new red blood cells. Low red blood cell levels can lead to anemia. Therefore, epoetin helps reduce your risk of anemia. Epoetin is quite effective, but it has a two-week delay between the injection and when your red blood cell count really starts to come back. It is not used as a “quick fix” for a low red blood cell count; a blood transfusion is usually performed if you need to recover your red blood cell count more quickly.
Both filgrastim and epoetin are given by injection in your doctor's office.
Possible side effects of filgrastim include:
Pain in arms or legs
Pain in joints or muscles
Pain in lower back or pelvis
Skin rash or itching
Possible side effects of epoetin include:
Cough, sneezing, or sore throat
Swelling of face, fingers, ankles, feet, or lower legs
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a