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April 24, 2021

Oxaliplatin is an FDA-approved prescription. This is an anti-cancer chemotherapy drug that is classified as an alkylating agent. This prescription comes as a solution or liquid to be administered into a vein.

What condition does Oxaliplatin treat?

Oxaliplatin is a type of chemotherapy prescription that is used for the treatment of:

  • Colon cancer
  • Cancer of the large bowel and rectum

This medicine contains platinum that is used to slow and stop the growth of cancer cells. Oxaliplatin is usually used along with another chemotherapy medication called fluorouracil and calcium folinate. The calcium folinate helps boosts the effectiveness of fluorouracil. 

How does Oxaliplatin work?

Cancer develops when cells within the body grow abnormally and uncontrollably. These cells that cause cancer spread and destroy nearby tissues. Oxaliplatin which is a platinum-based drug works by stopping the cancer cells from growing. It binds together the strands of the genetic material of the cells which is the DNA. DNA is vital for the development and reproduction of cells. This drug damages the DNA in the cancer cells and thus prevents from increasing in numbers.

However, this medication can also affect healthy and normal cells including those that increase quickly such as blood cells. The most essential side effect is on the bone marrow where blood cells are made. Oxaliplatin can lessen the production of blood cells that leaves people susceptible to infection. Regular blood tests are needed to monitor the levels of blood cells.

Doses are given in courses at several intervals in most chemotherapy treatments. It is to let normal cells recover from the adverse effects of the anti-cancer medications between doses. On the other hand, the cancer cells will begin to recover and replicate again during this period. An effective treatment is based on the administration of the next course of treatment before cancer has regrown to its size before. Also, the net effect is to reduce total cancer with each successive course. 

What is the dosage of Oxaliplatin?

  • The total of Oxaliplatin you will receive depends on several factors such as the type of cancer you have, weight, height, your overall health, or other health complications.  Your doctor will determine your dosage and schedule.
  • This medication is given by infusion into the vein.
  • Each dose of Oxaliplatin is given by a drip into a vein over 2 to 6 hours. It will depend on how well it is tolerated. It must always be given before the fluorouracil.
  • This medication is usually given once every two weeks.
  • While receiving treatment with Oxaliplatin, avoid cold temperatures and cold objects. You need to cover your mouth, nose, and skin if you must go out in cold temperatures.
  • Every 24 hours, it is very important to drink 2 to 3 quarts of fluid unless you were told to limit your fluid intake. By doing so, it will lessen your chances of being constipated. It will also prevent dehydration.


What are the precautions in using Oxaliplatin?

  • Before starting using this medicine, make sure to inform your doctor about any other medications you are taking. It includes herbal remedies, over-the-counter drugs, and vitamins.  Do not take aspirin or certain products have aspirin unless your doctor recommended it.
  • Do not receive any kind of vaccination or immunization without the approval of your doctor while you are using Oxaliplatin.
  • Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or might be pregnant before starting this treatment. This drug may be hazardous to the fetus. Women who become pregnant or are pregnant must be advised of the possible danger to the fetus.
  • This medication may impair your capacity to drive or use machinery. Talk to your doctor and about precautions you may need to take.
  • Do not breastfeed while taking Oxaliplatin.
  • Do not conceive a child while taking Oxaliplatin. It is recommended to use barrier methods of contraception. Talk with your doctor when you might securely be pregnant or conceive a child after treatment.
  • Take your temperature as your doctor or nurse tells you and whenever you feel like you may have a fever.
  • Avoid close contact with people who have flu, cold, or other infections.
  • Do not use ice in beverages or drink cold drinks. Drink fluids at warmer or room temperature and drink through a straw.

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