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All about: Buserelin

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Some commonly used brand names are:

In Canada—

  • Suprefact

* Not commercially available in the U.S.

Category

  • Antineoplastic

Description

Buserelin (BYOO-se-rel-in) is used to treat cancer of the prostate gland.

It is similar to a hormone normally released from the hypothalamus gland. When given regularly, buserelin decreases testosterone levels. Reducing the amount of testosterone in the body is one way of treating cancer of the prostate.

Buserelin is available only with your doctor's prescription, in the following dosage forms:

  • Nasal
  • Nasal solution (Canada)
  • Parenteral
  • Injection (Canada)

Before Using This Medicine

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For buserelin, the following should be considered:

Allergies—Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to buserelin.

Older adults—Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults. Although there is no specific information comparing use of buserelin in the elderly to use in other age groups, it has been used mostly in elderly patients and is not expected to cause different side effects or problems in older people than it does in younger adults.

Proper Use of This Medicine

Buserelin comes with patient directions. Read these instructions carefully .

For patients using the injection form of this medicine:

  • Use the syringes provided in the kit. Other syringes may not provide the correct dose. These disposable syringes and needles are already sterilized and designed to be used one time only and then discarded. If you have any questions about the use of disposable syringes, check with your health care professional.
  • After use, dispose of the syringes and needles in a safe manner. If a special container is not provided, ask your health care professional about the best way to dispose of syringes and needles.

For patients using the nasal solution form of this medicine:

  • Use the nebulizer (spray pump) provided. Directions about how to use it are included. If you have any questions about the use of the nebulizer, check with your health care professional.

Use this medicine only as directed by your doctor . Do not use more or less of it, and do not use it more often than your doctor ordered. The exact amount of medicine you need has been carefully worked out. Using too much may increase the chance of side effects, while using too little may not improve your condition.

Buserelin sometimes causes unwanted effects such as hot flashes or decreased sexual ability. It may also cause a temporary increase in pain, trouble in urinating, or weakness in your legs when you begin to use it. However, it is very important that you continue to use the medicine, even after you begin to feel better. Do not stop using this medicine without first checking with your doctor .

Dosing—The dose of buserelin will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label . The following information includes only the average doses of buserelin. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The number of doses you use each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you use the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using buserelin .

  • For prostate cancer:
    • For nasal dosage forms:
      • Adults: 200 micrograms (mcg) (2 sprays) into each nostril every eight hours.
    • For injection dosage forms:
      • Adults: In the beginning, 500 mcg (0.5 milligrams [mg]) injected under the skin every eight hours. After a time, your doctor may lower your dose to 200 mcg (0.2 mg) once a day.

Missed dose—If you miss a dose of this medicine, use it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage—To store this medicine:

  • Keep out of the reach of children.
  • Store away from heat and direct light.
  • Keep the medicine from freezing.
  • Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed. Dispose of used syringes properly in the container provided. Be sure that any discarded medicine is out of the reach of children.

Precautions While Using This Medicine

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly and to check for unwanted effects.

Buserelin causes sterility which may be permanent. If you intend to have children, discuss this with your doctor before receiving this medicine.

Side Effects of This Medicine

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

The following side effects are symptoms of a flareup of your condition that may occur during the first few days of treatment. After a few days, these symptoms should lessen. However, they may require medical attention. Check with your doctor if any of the following side effects occur or get worse:

Bone pain; numbness or tingling of hands or feet; trouble in urinating; weakness in legs

Other side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. However, check with your doctor if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome:

More common

Decrease in sexual desire; impotence; sudden sweating and feelings of warmth (``hot flashes'')

Less common

Burning, itching, redness, or swelling at place of injection; diarrhea; dry or sore nose (with nasal solution); headache (with nasal solution); increased sweating (with nasal solution); loss of appetite; nausea or vomiting; swelling and increased tenderness of breasts; swelling of feet or lower legs

Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.

Revised: 07/11/1994

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