Ask a Pharmacist Articles

Understanding Biosimilar Drugs

Understanding Biosimilar Drugs

There is a lot of talk about biosimilar drugs. What makes a drug a biosimilar?

GERD Medications May Affect Absorption of Oral Chemotherapeutic Agents

GERD Medications May Affect Absorption of Oral Chemotherapeutic Agents

What is the interaction between oral chemotherapy and GERD medicines?

Managing IRAEs in Patients Receiving Checkpoint Inhibitors

Managing IRAEs in Patients Receiving Checkpoint Inhibitors

How should side effects of the new checkpoint inhibitor drugs be managed?

Administering Mannitol With Hydration and Premeds

Administering Mannitol With Hydration and Premeds

At my current clinic, hydration and mannitol are administered before premedications on a cisplatin regimen; at previous clinic, premeds and hydration were administered before mannitol. Does it make a difference?

Factors That Determine Sequence of Administration for Multiple Chemotherapeutic Agents

Factors That Determine Sequence of Administration for Multiple Chemotherapeutic Agents

Chemotherapy agents are sometimes required to be administered in a specific sequence. What factors influence the need to follow a specific sequence?

Flushing the Line Between Medications in IV Administrations of Multiple Agents

Flushing the Line Between Medications in IV Administrations of Multiple Agents

What factors should be considered when calculating an adequate postmedication flush to deliver complete, accurate doses of small-volume IV medications to our patients?

Using Olanzapine as an Antiemetic for Patients Undergoing Moderate or High-Emetic Risk Chemotherapy

Using Olanzapine as an Antiemetic for Patients Undergoing Moderate or High-Emetic Risk Chemotherapy

Some of our patients receive olanzapine (Zyprexa) as an antiemetic. Is this a typical use of this drug?

Advice for Patients With CML Traveling While On Oral Chemotherapy

Advice for Patients With CML Traveling While On Oral Chemotherapy

During the summer, many patients with CML who are taking oral chemotherapy drugs have questions about taking their drugs while traveling. What advice can we give them regarding this?

Bone Pain Due to White Blood Cell Growth Factors

Bone Pain Due to White Blood Cell Growth Factors

How is loratadine used to treat bone pain in patients receiving white blood cell growth factors?

Understanding Drug Naming Nomenclature

Understanding Drug Naming Nomenclature

Why do the antibody drugs have such long names?

Data Lacks Support for Anticancer Activity of Cannabis

Data Lacks Support for Anticancer Activity of Cannabis

Patients periodically ask about the use of marijuana in cancer treatment. Is there any data about this?

MS Pain Management in Patients With Cancer

MS Pain Management in Patients With Cancer

What are the most effective treatments for MS pain in patients with co-existing cancer?

Managing capecitabine-associated mucositis

Managing capecitabine-associated mucositis

How should severe mucositis from capecitabine (Xeloda) be managed?

Function of a micron filter

Function of a micron filter

Why do some drugs need a micron filter and what is the affect of using one?

Drug sequence with gemcitabine

Drug sequence with gemcitabine

When giving gemcitabine (Gemzar) and cisplatin (Platinol), is it better to give gemcitabine first to reduce myelosuppression with every indication?

Importance of sequence in administering premeds with paclitaxel

Importance of sequence in administering premeds with paclitaxel

In what sequence should you administer premedications prior to paclitaxel: Should the antihistamine be given first or the steroid?

Treatment options for HER2-positive breast cancer

Treatment options for HER2-positive breast cancer

What are the treatment options for recurrent metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer after trastuzumab therapy?

Managing venous irritation from fosaprepitant

Managing venous irritation from fosaprepitant

What are the best practices to reduce venous irritation and delayed irritation?

Not all grapefruits have the same effect on drug metabolism

Not all grapefruits have the same effect on drug metabolism

The furanocoumarins in grapefruits interact with some medications—does eating a grapefruit allow for lower drug dosages?

Effective calming agents for agitation

Effective calming agents for agitation

What would you recommend for a patient with terminal agitation?

Safety of combining imatinib and radiotherapy

Safety of combining imatinib and radiotherapy

Is combination therapy of imatinib (Gleevec) and radiotherapy safe?

Managing peripheral neuropathy related to vincristine

Managing peripheral neuropathy related to vincristine

Has any medicine or supplement been shown to help lessen the severity of vincristine-related peripheral neuropathy?

Adjuvant endocrine therapy and alopecia

Adjuvant endocrine therapy and alopecia

A patient on adjuvant endocrine therapy for breast cancer is complaining of hair loss. Could the alopecia be due to her endocrine therapy?

Paroxetine and chemoprevention drugs

Paroxetine and chemoprevention drugs

Can the drug paroxetine mesylate (Brisdelle, Paxil) be given to patients taking a chemoprevention drug such as raloxifene (Evista) or any of the aromatase inhibitors?

Secondary cancers: When treatment ­increases the risk of disease

Secondary cancers: When treatment ­increases the risk of disease

Which cancer treatments can cause other cancers later in life?

Managing skin effects of EGFR inhibitor ­therapy

Managing skin effects of EGFR inhibitor ­therapy

Which patients, if any, should receive prophylactic antibiotics when starting therapy with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitors?

Neurotoxicity from 
oxaliplatin

Neurotoxicity from 
oxaliplatin

What are some of the potential autonomic issues related to acute neurotoxicity from oxaliplatin?

Proper use of denosumab for skeletal conditions

Proper use of denosumab for skeletal conditions

What should nurses be aware of when administering denosumab?

Consuming regular orange juice during drug therapy

Consuming regular orange juice during drug therapy

Does consumption of regular orange juice cause drug interactions, or should all citrus fruits be avoided?

Splitting or crushing oral cancer medications

Splitting or crushing oral cancer medications

Which medicines can be split or crushed for administration?

Defining the schedules for controlled substances

Defining the schedules for controlled substances

How are drugs classified as controlled substances?

Cautions for folic acid use

Folic acid can interfere with certain chemotherapy drugs. Is there an acceptable level of folic acid or should it be avoided completely?

Corticosteroids for infusion reactions

Corticosteroids for infusion reactions

Methylprednisolone (Solu-Medrol) and hydrocortisone (Solu-Cortef) are used to treat infusion reactions to chemotherapy and other anticancer treatments. Some clinicians seem to favor one over the other. Is there a significant difference between the two or is it just a matter of clinician preference?

Hot flushes on tamoxifen

Hot flushes on tamoxifen

The Advisor Forum addresses a question about medications that can treat hot flushes in women receiving tamoxifen.

Can citrus juices interfere with drug metabolism?

Can citrus juices interfere with drug metabolism?

Our pharmacist answers a question about a potential interaction between certain citrus juices and drug metabolism.

The role of sunitinib in the treatment of GIST

The role of sunitinib in the treatment of GIST

What is the role of sunitinib malate in the treatment of sarcomas?

How can meds be disposed of safely?

When opioids or other painkillers prescribed after surgery or an injury are no longer needed, or if a medication was changed, patients may have unused prescription medications in their homes. Is there a safe way for patients to dispose of these leftover prescriptions?

Lisinopril and breast cancer recurrence

Lisinopril and breast cancer recurrence

Is there any information about a link between lisinopril and breast cancer recurrence?

Delayed methotrexate clearance

Delayed methotrexate clearance

What are some common reasons for delayed methotrexate clearance after a 24-hour infusion?

Infusing paclitaxel without an inline filter

Infusing paclitaxel without an inline filter

What are the potential problems associated with infusing paclitaxel without an inline filter?

Administering tumor necrosis factor medications

Administering tumor necrosis factor medications

Do all tumor necrosis factor medications for rheumatoid arthritis require 1.2 micron filter tubing?

Benefits of using probiotics

Benefits of using probiotics

What are the benefits of probiotics? Does any particular kind offer more benefits than the others?

Managing side effects of crizotinib

What specific visual changes are associated with the new drug crizotinib and what causes them?

Managing side effects of tamoxifen

Managing side effects of tamoxifen

What is the risk for endometrial cancer in a patient taking tamoxifen to reduce recurrence of ER/PR positive breast cancer after treatment?

An exit strategy for opioid therapy

An exit strategy for opioid therapy

What exit strategy do you recommend for discontinuing opioid therapy?

Impact of CYP3A4 pathway

Impact of CYP3A4 pathway

How does the CYP3A4 pathway impact metabolism of the new oral targeted agents in oncology?

The effect of pentamidine on glucose

The effect of pentamidine on glucose

What effect does pentamidine have on glucose control?

Addressing drug shortages

Addressing drug shortages

What actions are being taken in regard to current shortages of chemotherapeutic agents?

Bleomycin test dose

Bleomycin test dose

Should patients receive a test dose of bleomycin? If yes, should the test dose be administered with every dose or just the initial dose?

Clinical data on Hawaiian noni fruit

Clinical data on Hawaiian noni fruit

What data are there to support the use of noni in oncology patients? Can it be incorporated safely with chemotherapy?

Parenteral iron test doses

Parenteral iron test doses

Who should receive a test dose prior to a full-dose iron infusion?

Drug-related skeletal effects and managing vaginal dryness

Drug-related skeletal effects and managing vaginal dryness

What should nurses be aware of when administering denosumab? What are the best strategies for managing vaginal dryness caused by hormonal therapy for breast cancer?

Managing cancer-related fatigue and drug-induced neuropathy

Managing cancer-related fatigue and drug-induced neuropathy

What role does medication play in managing fatigue? Can neuropathy from oxaliplatin therapy be effectively treated or prevented?

Timing of Neulasta and preventing opioid-induced constipation

Timing of Neulasta and preventing opioid-induced constipation

This month's questions: Giving Neulasta on the day of chemotherapy and strategies for managing opioid induced constipation.

Alternate dosing regimens for estrogen receptor antagonist

Alternate dosing regimens for estrogen receptor antagonist

Studies show that alternate dosages of fulvestrant may be efficacious, and adverse effects are similar in all regimens.

Infusion reactions and immunotherapy for prostate cancer

Infusion reactions and immunotherapy for prostate cancer

This month's questions: retreating with rituximab after an allergic reaction and administering the new prostate cancer immunotherapy.

Less common medications for pain, nausea, and vomiting

Less common medications for pain, nausea, and vomiting

The author summarizes the uses of methadone for cancer pain and olanzapine for chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting.

Educating patients about the proper disposal of old drugs

Educating patients about the proper disposal of old drugs

A few simple practices can help patients dispose of old and unused medications in a way that is safest for people, pets, and the environment.

Sign Up for Free e-newsletters

Regimen and Drug Listings

GET FULL LISTINGS OF TREATMENT Regimens and Drug INFORMATION

Bone Cancer Regimens Drugs
Brain Cancer Regimens Drugs
Breast Cancer Regimens Drugs
Endocrine Cancer Regimens Drugs
Gastrointestinal Cancer Regimens Drugs
Genitourinary Cancer Regimens Drugs
Gynecologic Cancer Regimens Drugs
Head and Neck Cancer Regimens Drugs
Hematologic Cancer Regimens Drugs
Lung Cancer Regimens Drugs
Other Cancers Regimens
Rare Cancers Regimens
Skin Cancer Regimens Drugs