Trametinib is used on its own or together with other medicine to treat a type of skin cancer (known as melanoma) that has spread to other parts of the body or which cannot be removed by surgery. It is also used to prevent melanoma from coming back after it has been removed by surgery.
This medicine may also be used with other medicine to treat cancers of the lung and thyroid glands.
Trametinib is used specifically in individuals who carry a certain type of abnormal gene called BRAF.
Take Trametinib exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
Take it on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal. Try to take it at the same time each day.
Swallow the tablet whole with a glass of water. Do not crush or chew the tablet.
The dose of this medicine will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the treatment timeframe depending on your condition and response to the medication.
Trametinib must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better. Do not stop taking it unless instructed by the doctor.
If you miss a dose and it is more than 12 hours until the next scheduled dose, take the missed dose, and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- heart problem
- high blood pressure
- lung problem
- severe kidney disease
- moderate to severe liver disease
- eye problem
- at risk of gastrointestinal perforation (a hole in the wall of the digestive tract) e.g. history of infection or inflammation of pouches in the intestines (bowel)
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
It is important that you do not get pregnant while taking this medicine. You must use proven birth control methods during Trametinib therapy and for at least 4 months after stopping the treatment. Birth control medicines containing hormones may not be effective. You may wish to discuss other reliable methods of birth control with your doctor.
Men must use condoms during sexual contact while taking this medicine and for at least 16 weeks after stopping the treatment.
Some genetic traits can affect an individual’s response to this medicine. Your doctor may perform genetic testing before giving you Trametinib to know if it is suitable for you.
Why is it important to keep my appointments with the doctor?
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.
- Pregnancy tests must be done before treatment to know if this medicine is suited for you to take.
- Routine tests (e.g. eye examination, liver and heart function, blood tests, eye examination) may be done while you are being treated with this medicine.
- Your blood pressure may suddenly change without you noticing it. Monitor your blood pressure during treatment.
- Regular monitoring for signs and symptoms of skin reactions, lung and stomach problems may also be needed.
Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have these tests.
Trametinib may cause tiredness, dizziness or some problems with your eyesight. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert or need to see clearly.
Other side effects include any of the following: feeling sick or tired, dry skin, itching, rash, chills, dry mouth, diarrhoea, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, constipation, headache, cough, hair loss or thinning, and muscle and joint pain.
Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
- light-headedness, feeling faint, fast or irregular heartbeat
- swelling in the legs or arms
- shortness of breath
- coughing up of blood
- pass out bloody or black as tar stools and vomiting blood or ground coffee-like material
- frequent and persistent sore throat with fever
- redness of the eye, loss of or changes in vision
- rashes with peeling of the skin or blistering of the lips, mouth or eyes accompanied by fever
- worsening muscle pain, dark urine
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking or using any of these medicines:
- medicines for irregular heartbeat e.g. verapamil, quinidine
- ciclosporin (medicine used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders)
- itraconazole (medicine to treat fungal infection)
- ritonavir (medicine for HIV infection)
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Trametinib.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.