Dabrafenib

Where is Dabrafenib used?

Dabrafenib is a prescription medicine used to treat skin cancer called melanoma. This is an FDA-approved medicine that is in the class of medications known as kinase inhibitors. Dabrafenib blocks the action of an abnormal protein that signals cancer cells to multiply. This stops the spread of cancer cells.

How does Dabrafenib work?

Dabrafenib interferes with the pathways that signal certain types of skin cancer cells to develop. The genetic mutation causes the melanoma cells to produce abnormal kinases. These are proteins that make the cells grow and multiply abnormally.

This medication works by inhibiting the action of the abnormal kinases produced by skin cancer cells that have a genetic mutation called BRAF V600. By targeting these abnormal kinases, Dabrafenib stops the signals that tell the cancer cells to grow and multiply.

How is Dabrafenib taken?

Dabrafenib is taken usually twice a day, by mouth. Each dose is taken on an empty stomach, an hour before or 2 hours after a meal. Take this medication about 12 hours apart. Remember to take at the same time and in the same way every day. Do not stop taking it without talking to your doctor.

Your doctor may adjust your dose or temporarily stop your treatment depending on your response to treatment and any side effects that you experience. Talk to your doctor about how you are feeling during your treatment. Drink plenty of fluids while having this treatment. If you missed a dose, call your doctor for further instructions. 

What are the possible side effects of Dabrafenib?

  • Dry skin
  • Dizziness
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Decreased appetite
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Tiredness
  • Cough
  • Constipation
  • Rash 
  • Hair loss

What are the precautions in using Dabrafenib?

  • Before treatment with this medication, the electrical activity in your heart should be monitored using ECG. You should also have a blood test to check the level of electrolytes such as magnesium in your blood. 
  • This medicine may cause fever. If you develop a fever while taking this medicine, you should contact your doctor as soon as possible.
  • If you experience any disturbances in your vision such as eye pain, increased sensitivity to light, blurred vision, redness, or irritation while taking this medicine, you should tell your doctor right away. 
  • Your ability to get pregnant or father a child may be affected by treatment with this medicine. It is important to discuss fertility with your doctor before starting treatment.
  • You should let your doctor know if you experience nausea or vomiting, sudden unexplained stomach or abdominal pain while taking this medicine. These could be symptoms of inflammation of your pancreas which will need treatment.
  • This could be harmful to a developing baby. Consult your doctor first if you are pregnant. If you get pregnant while taking Dabrafenib, call your doctor right away. 
  • This is not recommended for use if you are allergic to it. Inform your doctor if you have any allergies. This drug may contain ingredients that cause an allergic reaction.
  • If you are a breastfeeding woman, let your doctor know before taking a dose of this medication.