Generic Name(s): vismodegib
Drug Class: Hedgehog Pathway Inhibitor
Treats: Basal cell carcinoma
Erivedge is a cancer medication that interferes with the growth of certain cells of the body. This medication may be used to treat basal cell carcinoma that has spread to other parts of the body. Erivedge works by disrupting hedgehog signaling pathway that is normally involved in regulating certain cell processes in adults. The hedgehog signaling pathway becomes abnormally active leading to spread and growth of the cancerous cells n basal carcinoma. Erivedge attaches to a protein called SMO that is involved in activating the hedgehog signaling pathway. By doing this, Erivedge blocks this pathway, slowing down the spread and growth of the cancer cells in basal carcinoma.
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Erivedge is used to treat adults with basal carcinoma that is a slow-growing form of skin cancer in advanced stages. When the cancer spreads to other different parts of the body and is causing symptoms, or when it has started to spread to nearby parts and is not suitable for radiotherapy or surgery then that is when Erivedge is used. Basal cell carcinoma is a common type of skin cancer and when it recurs or left untreated in the same location after surgery or radiotherapy, it may advance into further surroundings such as sensory organs, bones or other tissues. Erivedge helps to shrink potentially or disfiguring life-threatening lesions in advanced skin cancer.
Below is the basic dosage that is used by most health care providers to give Erivedge to their patients. However, depending on your medical condition and history, a health care provider might recommend a different dosage. You should not start, change your dosage, or stop taking your medication without consulting your health provider. Erivedge should be obtained with a prescription and only prescribed under or by the supervision of a specialist experienced in managing basal cell carcinoma.
- It is available in 150 mg
- Recommended dosage is one capsule once a day
- A doctor might decide to increase your dosage as needed until the intended effect is achieved
Erivedge Side Effects
Erivedge, just like any other medication, may have unwanted effects. In the unlikely situation that you experience any side effects with this medication, tell your doctor immediately Common side effects of Erivedge:
- Joint aches
- muscle spasms
- Weight loss
- decrease appetite
- hair loss
- loss of taste or change in how things taste
Other side effects of Erivedge may include:
- Low levels of sodium in the blood
- Missed monthly periods in females
- Higher than normal blood level of urea or other nitrogen containing compounds in the blood
- Low potassium levels
If any of the symptoms stated above arises, it is important to contact your pharmacist or doctor.
There are possible drug interactions with Erivedge, and you should not change the dosage prescribed by your doctor. Also, you should not start or stop any prescriptions by your doctor without consulting them. Some of the medications that can cause severe interactions with Erivedge include:
- Drugs that induce or inhibit drug metabolizing enzymes such as carbamazepine, erythromycin, phenobarbital, modafinil, and fluconazole
- Drugs that inhibit transport systems such as clarithromycin, azithromycin, erythromycin
- Medications that affect Gastric pH such as proton pump inhibitors, H2-receptor antacids, and antagonists. These medications may alter the solubility of Erivedge and reduce its bioavailability