Alpelisib (brand name- Piqray, Vijoice) is an FDA-approved treatment for breast cancer that has spread to nearby tissues or other body parts. It is used along with fulvestrant (Faslodex). Alpelisib is effective in women after menopause (end of menstrual periods). It can also be used in men for treating cancers not getting away from other treatment options.
Alpelisib is in a class of medications called kinase inhibitors. It works by blocking the signals that cause cancer cells to multiply. This stops the growth and spread of cancer cells.
Let us walk you through the key things you need to know about alpelisib.
How should I take Alpelisib or Piqray?
Alpelisib comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken with food once a day at around the same time every day. If you vomit after taking alpelisib, do not take another dose. Continue your regular dosing schedule.
Swallow the tablets whole; do not split, chew, or crush them. Do not take a tablet that is broken, cracked, or damaged.
Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take alpelisib exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or more often than your doctor prescribes.
Do not stop taking Alpelisib or fulvestrant without talking to your doctor. You can help them by tracking your side effects in Ankr.
What are the side effects of Alpelisib or Piqray ?
Common side effects
- extreme tiredness
- decreased appetite
- taste changes
- weight loss
- belly pain
- hair loss
- dry skin
- dry mouth
- vaginal dryness
- swelling of the arms, legs, or ankles
- increased thirst
- peeling skin
- mouth sores
- sores on lips
- flu-like symptoms
Serious side effects
- trouble swallowing
- fast heartbeat
- increased appetite with weight loss
- urinating more often or in larger amounts than usual
- urine breathe like fruit
- shortness of breath
- chest pain
- difficulty breathing
- severe diarrhea
- decreased urination
- painful, or urgent urination
Alpelisib may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking alpelisib or Piqray
- tell your doctor about your allergies
- tell your doctor about other intakes
- tell your doctor about any disease or symptom in the past or now
While you are on alpelisib or Piqray
- tell your doctor if you or your partner are pregnant, or plan to become pregnant. You or your partner should not become pregnant during your treatment with alpelisib. Talk to your doctor about the types of birth control that are right for you.
- tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding. You should not breastfeed while taking aleplisib.
- you should know that alpelisib decreases fertility.
I forgot a dose. What should I do?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if more than 9 hours have passed since the missed dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
In case of an emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can’t be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.
Symptoms of overdose may include:
- lack of energy
- increased thirst and appetite
- dry mouth
- urinating more often or larger amounts
How should I safely store and dispose of Alpelisib or Piqray?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. http://www.upandaway.org
The best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website (http://goo.gl/c4Rm4p) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet
Last Revised – 01/03/2023, FDA updated -04/05.2022, SG
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