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HYCAMTIN®
(topotecan)

WARNING

BONE MARROW SUPPRESSION

HYCAMTIN should be administered only to patients with baseline neutrophil counts of ≥ 1,500 cells/mm³ and a platelet count ≥ 100,000 cells/mm³. In order to assess the occurrence of bone marrow suppression, blood cell counts should be monitored.

DRUG DESCRIPTION

Topotecan hydrochloride is a semi-synthetic derivative of camptothecin and is an anti-tumor drug with topoisomerase I-inhibitory activity.

The chemical name for topotecan hydrochloride is (S)-10-[(dimethylamino)methyl]-4- ethyl-4,9-dihydroxy-1H-pyrano[3',4':6,7] indolizino [1,2-b]quinoline-3,14-(4H,12H)-dione monohydrochloride. It has the molecular formula C23H23N3O5•HCl and a molecular weight of 457.9. It is soluble in water and melts with decomposition at 213° to 218°C.

Topotecan hydrochloride has the following structural formula:

HYCAMTIN® (topotecan)  Structural Formula Illustration

HYCAMTIN capsules contain topotecan hydrochloride, the content of which is expressed as topotecan free base. The major excipients are hydrogenated vegetable oil, glyceryl monostearate, gelatin, and titanium dioxide. The capsules are imprinted with edible black ink. The 1 mg capsules also contain red iron oxide.

What are the possible side effects of topotecan (Hycamtin)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • wheezing, feeling short of breath, chest pain, dry cough;
  • fever, chills, flu symptoms, mouth and throat ulcers, rapid and shallow breathing, fainting;
  • pale skin, feeling light-headed, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating;
  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots...

Read All Potential Side Effects and See Pictures of Hycamtin »

What are the precautions when taking topotecan hydrochloride (Hycamtin)?

Before using topotecan, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: a certain immune system problem (neutropenia).

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: blood/bone marrow disorders (e.g., low platelet/white blood cell/red blood cell levels), kidney disease, liver disease.

This drug may make you weak or tired. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires...

Read All Potential Precautions of Hycamtin »

Last reviewed on RxList: 10/28/2011
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.