What is LUTATHERA?
LUTATHERA® (lutetium Lu 177 dotatate) is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with a type of cancer known as gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (GEP-NETs) that are positive for the hormone receptor somatostatin, including GEP-NETs in the foregut, midgut, and hindgut.
IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION
What are some important things to know about the safety of LUTATHERA?
LUTATHERA is associated with some serious safety considerations and, in some cases, these may require your health care provider to adjust or stop your treatment. You should always follow your health care provider’s instructions. Safety considerations include:
- Radiation exposure: Treatment with LUTATHERA will expose you to radiation, which can contribute to your long-term radiation exposure. Overall radiation exposure is associated with an increased risk for cancer. The radiation will be detectable in your urine for up to 30 days following administration of the drug. It is important to minimize radiation exposure to household contacts consistent with good radiation safety practices as advised by your health care provider.
- Bone marrow problems: Treatment with LUTATHERA increases the risk of myelosuppression, a condition in which bone marrow activity is decreased, resulting in a drop in blood cell counts. You may experience blood-related side effects such as low red blood cells (anemia), low numbers of cells that are responsible for blood clotting (thrombocytopenia), and low numbers of white blood cells (neutropenia). Speak with your health care provider if you experience any signs or symptoms of infection, fever, chills, dizziness, shortness of breath, or increased bleeding or bruising. Your health care provider may need to adjust or stop your treatment accordingly.
- Secondary bone marrow and blood cancers: Other serious conditions that you may develop as a direct result of treatment with LUTATHERA include blood and bone marrow disorders known as secondary myelodysplastic syndrome and cancer known as acute leukemia. Your health care provider will routinely check your blood cell counts and tell you if they are too low or too high.
- Kidney problems: Treatment with LUTATHERA will expose your kidneys to radiation and may impair their ability to work as normal. You may be at an increased risk for kidney problems after LUTATHERA treatment if you already have kidney impairment before treatment. In some cases, patients have experienced kidney failure after treatment with LUTATHERA. Your health care provider will provide you with an amino acid solution before, during, and after LUTATHERA to help protect your kidneys. You should stay well hydrated before, during, and after your treatment. You should urinate frequently during and after administration of LUTATHERA. Your doctor will monitor your kidney function and may withhold, reduce, or stop your LUTATHERA treatment accordingly.
- Liver problems: In clinical studies of LUTATHERA, less than 1% of patients were reported to have tumor bleeding (hemorrhage), swelling (edema), or tissue damage (necrosis) to the liver. If you have tumors in your liver, you may be more likely to experience these side effects. Signs that you may be experiencing liver damage include increases in blood markers called alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and gamma-glutamyl transferase. Your health care provider will monitor your liver using blood tests and may need to withhold, reduce, or stop your LUTATHERA treatment accordingly.
- Allergic reactions: Allergic reactions have occurred in people who were treated with LUTATHERA. Notify your health care provider if you develop symptoms of an allergic reaction. Seek emergency help right away for any serious allergic reactions. Symptoms may include trouble breathing or swallowing; raised bumps (hives); rash or itching; and swelling of the face, lips, tongue, throat, or arms.
- Hormonal gland problems (carcinoid crisis): During your treatment you may experience certain symptoms that are related to hormones released from your cancer. These symptoms may include flushing, diarrhea, difficulty breathing (bronchospasm), and low blood pressure (hypotension), and may occur during or within the 24 hours after your first LUTATHERA treatment. Your health care provider will monitor you closely. Speak with your health care provider if you experience any of these signs or symptoms.
- Pregnancy warning: Tell your health care provider if you are pregnant. LUTATHERA can harm your unborn baby. Females should use an effective method of birth control during treatment and for 7 months after the final dose of LUTATHERA. Males with female partners should use an effective method of birth control during treatment and for 4 months after the final dose of LUTATHERA.
- Breastfeeding warning: You should not breastfeed during treatment with LUTATHERA and for 2.5 months after your final dose of LUTATHERA.
- Fertility problems: Treatment with LUTATHERA may cause infertility. This is because radiation absorbed by your testes or ovaries over the treatment period falls within the range of exposure in which temporary or permanent infertility may occur.
What are the most common side effects of LUTATHERA?
The most common and most serious side effects of LUTATHERA include vomiting, nausea, decreased blood cell counts, increased liver enzymes, decreased blood potassium levels, and increased blood glucose.
Talk to your doctor if you experience any of these side effects. There are other possible side effects of LUTATHERA. For more information and to learn more about LUTATHERA, talk to your doctor or health care provider.
What other medicines may interact with LUTATHERA?
Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medications. Somatostatin analogues and corticosteroids may affect how your LUTATHERA treatment works. You should stop taking your long-acting somatostatin analogue at least 4 weeks before LUTATHERA treatment. You may continue taking short-acting somatostatin analogues up to 24 hours before your LUTATHERA treatment. Avoid repeated high doses of glucocorticosteroids during treatment with LUTATHERA.
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Please see full Prescribing Information for LUTATHERA.