For second-line treatment of metastatic colorectal
cancer and as first-line treatment when administered with 5-fluorouracil
Pharmacia & Upjohn
*Date Approved by the
April 20, 2000
*Approval by FDA does not mean that a new
drug will be immediately marketed and available to
What is Camptosar used for?
Camptosar is used for the second-line treatment of metastatic colorectal
cancer and as first-line treatment when administered with 5-fluorouracil and
Special Warnings with Camptosar:
Camptosar can induce both early and late forms of diarrhea that appear to
be mediated by different mechanisms. Both forms of diarrhea may be severe.
Early diarrhea (occurring during or within 24 hours of administration of
Camptosar) may be preceded by complaints of diaphoresis and abdominal cramping
and may be ameliorated by atropine. Late diarrhea (occurring more than 24
hours after administration of Camptosar) can be prolonged, may lead to
dehydration and electrolyte imbalance, and can be life-threatening. Late
diarrhea should be treated promptly with loperamide; patients with severe
diarrhea should be carefully monitored and given fluid and electrolyte
replacement if they become dehydrated.
Severe myelosuppression may occur with Camptosar treatment. Therapy with
Camptosar should be temporarily discontinued if neutropenic fever occurs or if
the absolute neutrophil count drops below 500/mm(3). The dose of Camptosar
should be reduced if white blood cell counts fall below levels as indicated in
the prescribing information. Physicians may wish to administer G-CSF to boost
white blood cell counts in neutropenic patients receiving Camptosar.
Because Camptosar may cause fetal harm, women should not become pregnant
while receiving treatment with Camptosar. Women who do become pregnant should
be advised of the potential hazard to the fetus.
General Precautions with Camptosar:
Camptosar may induce nausea and vomiting. It is recommended that
patients receive an antiemetic agent prior to Camptosar infusion.
How should I take Camptosar?
Camptosar injection should be administered only under the
supervision of a physician who is experienced in the use of cancer
chemotherapeutic agents. Appropriate management of complications is possible
only when adequate diagnostic and treatment facilities are readily available.
What should I avoid while taking Camptosar?
The adverse effects of Camptosar may be exacerbated by other anticancer
drugs with similar adverse effects.
Patients who have received pelvic or abdominal irradiation are at
increased risk of severe myelosuppression following Camptosar administration.
The concurrent administration of Camptosar with irradiation has not been
adequately studied and is not recommended.
The administration of dexamethasone, given as antiemetic prophylaxis, may
contribute to hyperglycemia or lymphocytopenia in some patients.
In view of the increased risk of diarrhea with Camptosar use, laxatives
and diuretics should be withheld.