ZYTIGA® (abiraterone acetate) Tablets: A Comprehensive Guide for Patients

ZYTIGA®, also known as abiraterone acetate, is a prescription medication used in conjunction with prednisone to treat men with metastatic prostate cancer. Metastatic prostate cancer is a condition where prostate cancer has spread to other parts of the body. ZYTIGA® belongs to a class of drugs called androgen biosynthesis inhibitors (ABIs), which work by blocking the production of androgens, hormones that play a crucial role in the growth and progression of prostate cancer.

Indications (Uses)

ZYTIGA® is indicated for the treatment of two types of prostate cancer:

  1. Metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC): This type of prostate cancer has stopped responding to or has become resistant to hormone therapy, a common treatment for prostate cancer.
  2. Metastatic high-risk castration-sensitive prostate cancer (CSPC): This type of prostate cancer is considered high-risk because it has a high likelihood of spreading to other parts of the body.

Dosage and Administration

ZYTIGA® is typically administered as a single oral tablet, taken once daily on an empty stomach. Avoid consuming food within two hours before and one hour after taking ZYTIGA®, as this can increase drug absorption and potentially lead to adverse reactions. Swallow the tablet whole with water, avoiding crushing or chewing it.

The recommended dosage of ZYTIGA® depends on the type of prostate cancer being treated:

  • Metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC): The recommended dosage is 1,000 mg (two 500 mg tablets or four 250 mg tablets) orally once daily with prednisone 5 mg orally twice daily.
  • Metastatic high-risk castration-sensitive prostate cancer (CSPC): The recommended dosage is 1,000 mg (two 500 mg tablets or four 250 mg tablets) orally once daily with prednisone 5 mg orally once daily.

It is crucial to follow your healthcare provider’s instructions carefully regarding the dosage and administration of ZYTIGA® to ensure optimal effectiveness and minimize the risk of side effects.

Common Side Effects

ZYTIGA® is generally well-tolerated, but some side effects may occur. The most common side effects include:

  • Fatigue
  • Joint pain
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Nausea
  • Edema (swelling) in legs or feet
  • Hypokalemia (low potassium levels)
  • Hot flashes
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Upper respiratory tract infections (cold, sinus infection, throat infection)
  • Cough
  • Headache
  • Anemia (low red blood cell count)
  • Hyperlipidemia (high cholesterol and triglycerides)
  • Hyperglycemia (high blood sugar)
  • Abnormal blood test results

If you experience any of these side effects, talk to your healthcare provider. They may recommend ways to manage or alleviate these side effects.

Important Precautions

Before starting ZYTIGA® therapy, it is important to inform your healthcare provider about all other medications, supplements, and herbal remedies you are taking. ZYTIGA® can interact with certain medications, potentially affecting their effectiveness or increasing the risk of side effects.

It is also important to inform your healthcare provider about any medical conditions you have, including:

  • Liver problems
  • Kidney problems
  • Adrenal gland problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Low potassium levels
  • Osteoporosis (weak bones)

These conditions may require special monitoring during ZYTIGA® therapy.

Additional Considerations

ZYTIGA® can potentially affect fertility in men, potentially impacting their ability to father children. Patients should discuss any concerns about fertility with their healthcare provider.

Women of childbearing potential should avoid coming into contact with ZYTIGA®, as it can cause harm to the developing fetus.

Conclusion

ZYTIGA® offers a valuable treatment option for men with metastatic prostate cancer, offering the potential to prolong survival, delay disease progression, and improve quality of life. Effective management of ZYTIGA® therapy requires close collaboration with a healthcare provider, strict adherence to the prescribed regimen, and proactive strategies to minimize side effects. If you have any questions or concerns about ZYTIGA® therapy, talk to your healthcare provider.


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