What is Lynparza Uses, warnings & interactions
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Lynparza (olaparib) is a type of cancer treatment that is manufactured by AstraZeneca. It was approved in 2014 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) alone or in combination with other medications to treat certain types of cancer, including breast, prostate, ovarian, and pancreatic cancer.
If your doctor has prescribed Lynparza to you, you may want to know more about what it is and how it works. Here we’ll explain what Lynparza is used for, how it works, its side effects, and more.
What is Lynparza used for?
Lynparza is targeted therapy that is used alone or in combination with other medicines for the:
- Maintenance treatment of BRCA-mutated advanced ovarian cancer, fallopian tube cancer, or primary peritoneal cancer
- Maintenance treatment of HRD-positive advanced ovarian cancer, fallopian tube cancer, or primary peritoneal cancer along with Avastin (bevacizumab)
- Maintenance treatment of recurrent ovarian cancer
- Adjuvant treatment of germline BRCA-mutated HER2-negative high-risk early breast cancer
- Treatment of germline BRCA-mutated HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer
- Maintenance treatment of germline BRCA-mutated metastatic pancreatic cancer
- Treatment of HRR gene-mutated metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer
How does Lynparza work?
Lynparza acts as an inhibitor of the enzyme poly ADP ribose polymerase (PARP). PARPs are proteins that help cells repair their DNA so they can continue to divide and spread. Some forms of cancer have gene mutations that increase their reliance on PARPs. This includes cancer cells with a mutation in their BRCA genes. Lynparza blocks the activity of PARPs. Without these proteins, cancer cells can not repair themselves and die.
What are the most commonly prescribed doses of Lynparza?
- 100mg tablet
- 150mg tablet
Before taking Lynparza
Before taking Lynparza, tell your healthcare provider about your medical conditions, including:
- Lung problems
- Kidney problems
- Are pregnant, plan on becoming pregnant, or are breastfeeding
How to take Lynparza
- Read the Full Prescribing Information, Drug Information, and Medication Guide that comes with Lynparza.
- Take this medication exactly as your doctor tells you. Do not change your dose of Lynparza or stop taking this medication without talking to them first. Your doctor will determine how long you take Lynparza.
- Lynparza is typically taken by mouth twice a day, approximately 12 hours apart. It can be taken with or without food. Swallow Lynparza tablets whole. Do not chew, crush, or cut the tablets.
- You can take up to 4 Lynparza tablets per day.
- You should continue taking hormonal therapy while on Lynparza if you are being treated for hormone receptor-positive early breast cancer.
- You should continue taking gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) therapy while on Lynparza if you are being treated for prostate cancer unless you have had surgical castration.
- If you miss a dose of this medication, skip it and take the next dose at its usual time. Do not take extra doses of Lynparza to make up for missed doses.
You should not take this medication if you have an allergy to olaparib or any inactive ingredients in its formulation.
- Approximately 1.5% of patients taking Lynparza experienced bone marrow problems such as myelodysplastic syndrome/acute myeloid leukemia (MDS/AML). Discontinue if this occurs.
- Rare, fatal cases of pneumonitis have occurred with this medication. Discontinue if this occurs.
- Almost 7% of Lynparza patients experienced venous thromboembolic events, including fatal pulmonary embolisms. Monitor and treat as needed.
Lynparza drug interactions
When Lynparza is taken with other medications, it may change how Lynparza works or increase the frequency and severity of side effects. You should ask your doctor if any of the prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements you take may interact with Lynparza, including:
- Strong CYP3A inhibitors such as itraconazole
- Strong CYP3A inducers such as rifampin
- Grapefruit and grapefruit juice
- Seville oranges and Seville orange juice
Lynparza side effects
Some common side effects of Lynparza seen in clinical trials include:
- Stomach pain
- Decreased platelets
- Excessive tiredness
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Low red blood cell and white blood cell counts
- Heartburn and indigestion
- Change in taste
Lynparza can sometimes cause more serious side effects, including:
- Severe, life-threatening allergic reactions (hives, swelling of the face or throat, and shortness of breath)
- Bone marrow problems
- Increased risk of blood clots
- Pneumonitis (chest pain or tightness, coughing up blood, or rapid breathing)
Contact your healthcare professional for medical advice about any possible side effects you experience while taking Lynparza. You can report your adverse reactions to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.
Your doctor can prescribe other medications if Lynparza is not right for you. They will vary by factors such as side effects and cost. Some FDA-approved alternatives to Lynparza include:
Can you take Lynparza while you are pregnant or breastfeeding?
Based on animal studies and how it works, you should not use Lynparza during pregnancy because it may harm the fetus. You should have a pregnancy test before starting treatment and use an effective form of contraception during treatment and for at least 6 months after receiving your last dose. Males taking Lynparza should use effective birth control during treatment and for 3 months following the last dose if they’re with a female who is pregnant or may become pregnant. Because of the potential for adverse effects on breastfed infants, you should not breastfeed during treatment and for 1 month after receiving your last dose. You should always discuss the risks and benefits of any medication with your healthcare provider if you are pregnant, plan on becoming pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
How long does it take Lynparza to work?
It typically takes Lynparza 2 to 5 months to start working depending on the cancer being treated. It may take at least 3 months for Lynparza to start working when used to treat ovarian cancer. Also, most women (61%) taking Lynparza did not see their ovarian cancer grow or return after an average of 3.4 years (41 months).
Is Lynparza chemotherapy?
According to the manufacturer, Lynparza is a non-chemotherapy oral drug that is used to treat certain types of cancer. It is considered targeted therapy.
What cancers does Lynparza treat?
Lynparza is approved to treat certain types of ovarian cancer, HER2-negative breast cancer, prostate cancer, and pancreatic cancer.
Can Lynparza cure cancer?
While Lynparza does not cure cancer, it can increase your survival rate and help you live longer. A seven-year follow-up showed that 67% of patients taking Lynparza were still alive versus 47% of patients taking a placebo.
How much does Lynparza cost?
Currently, there is no generic Lynparza available on the market. The average cost of #60 tablets of Lynparza 100mg is almost $8,000. However, you can save on brand-name drugs like Lynparza through NiceRx if eligible for assistance.
The content on this website is intended for information purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice. The information on this website should not be relied upon and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always speak to your doctor regarding the risks and benefits of any treatment.