Women of childbearing potential/contraception in males and females: Women of childbearing potential should use appropriate contraceptive measures to avoid pregnancy during etoposide therapy.
Etoposide has been shown to be teratogenic in mice and rats (see Pharmacology: Toxicology: Preclinical safety data under Actions).
Given the mutagenic potential of etoposide, an effective contraceptive is required for both male and female patients during treatment and up to 6 months after ending treatment (see Precautions). Genetic consultation is recommended if the patient wishes to have children after ending treatment.
Pregnancy: There are no or limited amount of data from the use of etoposide in pregnant women.
Studies in animals have shown reproductive toxicity (see Pharmacology: Toxicology: Preclinical safety data under Actions).
In general etoposide can cause foetal harm when administered to pregnant women.
Etoposide should not be used during pregnancy unless the clinical condition of the woman requires treatment with etoposide.
Women of childbearing potential should be advised to avoid becoming pregnant.
Women of childbearing potential have to use effective contraception during and up to 6 months after treatment.
If this medicinal product is used during pregnancy, or if the patient becomes pregnant while receiving this medicinal product, the patient should be informed of the potential hazard to the foetus.
Breast-feeding: Etoposide is excreted in human milk.
There is the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants from etoposide. A decision must be made whether to discontinue breast-feeding or to discontinue etoposide, taking into account the benefit of breast-feeding for the child and the benefit of therapy for the woman (see Contraindications).
Fertility: As etoposide may decrease male fertility, preservation of sperm may be considered for the purpose of later fatherhood.