Exemestane (By mouth)
Uses of This Medicine
Exemestane is used to treat early and advanced breast cancer in women who have already stopped menstruating (postmenopausal). It is usually used in women who have already received a cancer medication called tamoxifen.
Many breast cancer tumors grow in response to estrogen. Exemestane interferes with the production of estrogen in the body. As a result, the amount of estrogen that the tumor is exposed to is reduced, which will limit the growth of the tumor.
Before you begin treatment with exemestane, you and your doctor should talk about the benefits this medicine will do as well as the risks of using it.
This medicine is available only with your doctor’s prescription.
Once a medicine has been approved for marketing for a certain use, experience may show that it is also useful for other medical problems. Although these uses are not included in product labeling, exemestane is used in certain patients with the following medical conditions:
Adjuvant therapy in premenopausal women, in combination with ovarian suppression.
Prevention of invasive breast cancer in postmenopausal women at increased risk.
Other uses (PubMed Health)
How To Use
Medicines used to treat cancer are very strong and can have many side effects. Before receiving this medicine, make sure you understand all the risks and benefits. It is important for you to work closely with your doctor during your treatment.
Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to use. Do not use more than directed.
Take this medicine after a meal. Use it at the same time each day.
Do not stop using this medicine until your doctor tells you to. When your supply of this medicine is running low, contact your doctor or pharmacist ahead of time. Do not allow yourself to run out of this medicine.
Read and follow the patient instructions that come with this medicine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
If a dose is missed:
Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
Exemestane should not be used with hormone medicine that contains estrogen (such as Premarin®), birth control pills or patches, or other hormone replacement therapy.
When Not To Use
You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to exemestane, if you are pregnant, or if you have not stopped menstruating (premenopausal).
This medicine may make you bleed, bruise, or get infections more easily. Take precautions to prevent illness and injury. Wash your hands often.
Stop taking this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you start having chest pains or shortness of breath. This medicine may cause some people to have heart problems, but this does not occur very often.
Your doctor will check your progress and the effects of this medicine at regular visits. Keep all appointments. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects. It is important for women to have regular gynecologic check-ups while taking this medicine.
Possible side effects
Summary More details
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
Chest pain, shortness of breath, trouble with breathing, or wheezing.
Difficulty with speaking.
Numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your hands, arms, legs, or feet.
Pain or burning with urination.
Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
Dizziness or confusion.
Feeling weak, tired, or depressed.
Runny or stuffy nose.
Trouble with sleeping.
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
More side effects of this drug
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There may be other brand names for this medicine.