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Casodex (Bicalutamide)  

Warning: The FDA has issued a warning that this medication is associated with a chance of severe liver injury or failure. Rare cases of death or hospitalization due to severe liver injury have been reported in association with taking CASODEX. These incidences generally occurred within the first three to four months of treatment with the drug.

 

Indications: Casodex comes in tablet form to be taken by mouth. It is used to treat prostate cancer , especially metastatic prostate cancer. As a non-steroidal anti-androgen, this medication is most commonly used in the treatment of prostate cancer that is localized in the prostate gland and that has begun to spread to other areas of the body. The brand name Casodex is used for the generic drug bicalutamide. In order to understand what an anti-androgen does, it is helpful to have a basic understanding of androgens and their function in the human body. Androgens are hormones that are produced and emitted by the adrenal gland. Their specific function is to stimulate the growth of tissues that are widely associated with “male” traits, and include the prostate gland, facial and body hair, among other things. It is also suspected that androgens stimulate the growth of cancer cells that have originated in the prostate gland. By taking anti-androgen medications, the spread of these cells is inhibited, although the use of this medication is not considered to be a cure for cancer.

Dosage: Casodex is a tablet that is designed to be taken orally. It is often prescribed in combination with other medications. The specific dosage should be determined by a doctor and strictly followed by any patient who is taking the medicine. While a certain dose may be considered standard, the doctor may choose to alter this in order to more fully accommodate the patient’s condition and in order to reflect responsiveness to treatment.

This tablet should usually be taken once a day in the morning or in the evening, according to the preference of the patient, and it should be taken at approximately the same time every day in order to facilitate proper absorption and treatment. If a dose is missed, the tablet should be taken as soon as possible thereafter. If you don’t remember until the time of your next dose, skip the missed dose. Taking more than one pill at a time can be hazardous.

Overdose: Casodex o verdose is not known to be fatal. However, as a precaution, if you believe you have taken a higher dose of Casodex , contact your physician or a drug and poison control center near you immediately. 

Missing dose: Do not take less or more of the dose recommended by your doctor. If you miss a dose of Casodex in a time not too closed to next one, it is important to take it as soon as possible. If you recall the missing in the next day, or when it is time to take the next dose, do not double the dose; it can cause serious health problems. The wise option is to contact your physician or wait to continue the normal dosage. 

Contraindications: There are no significant contraindications for the prescription of this medication. It is important that you discuss your current health and any concerns that you may have with your physician before beginning to take this drug. The following groups of individual should take Casodex:  

  • children
  • women 
  • Patients allergic to Casodex or one of its ingredients.  

Interactions: Because drug interactions can cause medications to work differently or create dangerous side effects, it is always important to disclose any medications or supplements to the prescribing doctor. Warfarin has known interactions with Casodex and may affect the prescription. Other interacting medicines may include: calcium-channel blockers, immunosuppressives, HIV protease inhibitors, anticoagulants, St John worth, and various other medications.

Talk to your health care provider before taking of these medications below: 

  • Sildenafil (Viagra)
  • alprazolam (Xanax)
  • aripiprazole (Abilify)
  • buspirone (Buspar)
  • nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia)
  • atorvastatin (Lipitor)
  • lovastatin (Mevacor)
  • indinavir (Crixivan)
  • amlodipine (Norvasc)
  • diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac)
  • felodipine (Plendil)
  • ritonavir (Norvir)
  • trazodone (Desyrel)
  • halcion (Triazolam)
  • Vincristine (Vincasar).  

 

Side effects: Casodex side effects range from minor to severe. most common side effects associated with taking this medication include:

  • decreased appetite
  • painful urination
  • hot flashes or flushing
  • bone, back, or pelvic pain
  • muscle pain and weakness
  • pain, burning, or tingling in the hands or feet
  • Intestinal problems such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, and constipation  

Although rare, Casodex can cause serious side effects which require immediate medical attention; contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of these symptoms:   

  • dizziness   
  • chest pain
  • shortness of breath
  • bloody urine
  • severe depression
  • painful or swollen breasts
  • fainting (temporary loss of consciousness) 
  • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing 
  • Painful or Difficulty swallowing 
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes  (jaundice)
  • unusual bruising or bleeding 
  • pain in the upper right part of the stomach
  • Swelling of your arms, feet, ankles, or lower legs.  

 

References: 

1 - nlm.nih.gov, Bicalutamide 

2 - santecheznous.com, Casodex