Cotellic: Uses – Side Effects – Warnings

Cotellic is a prescription medicine used in combination with another medicine, vemurafenib, to treat a specific type of skin cancer called melanoma. The drug is also known by its generic name cobimetinib and works by blocking enzymes that cancer cells need to grow and divide.

Uses

Cotellic is approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat advanced melanoma that cannot be removed by surgery or has spread to other parts of the body. Specifically, it is used in combination with vemurafenib, another drug that targets cancer cells, to slow or stop the growth of cancerous tumors.

Benefits

Clinical trials have shown that Cotellic in combination with vemurafenib significantly prolongs progression-free survival (PFS) in patients with advanced melanoma compared to those treated with vemurafenib alone. One study found that patients treated with the combination therapy had a median PFS of 12.3 months, compared to 7.2 months for those on vemurafenib monotherapy. Additionally, the combination therapy improved overall survival in patients with BRAF V600 mutation-positive melanoma.

Side Effects

Like all medications, Cotellic can cause side effects. The most common ones include:

– Nausea
– Vomiting
– Fatigue
– Diarrhea
– Fever
– Skin rash

Other side effects may include muscle pain, joint pain, and eye problems. Cotellic may also increase risk of bleeding, so patients taking blood thinners or who have a bleeding disorder should discuss this with their doctor before taking the drug.

Warnings

Cotellic may cause severe side effects that are life-threatening, including liver damage and lung inflammation. Patients should report any symptoms such as jaundice, abdominal pain, high fever, shortness of breath, or coughing up blood to their doctor immediately. Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should not take Cotellic, as it can harm the developing fetus. Men who are taking Cotellic should also use effective birth control during treatment and for at least two weeks after the last dose of the drug.

FAQs

  1. What is Cotellic used for?

    Cotellic is used in combination with vemurafenib to treat advanced melanoma that cannot be removed by surgery or has spread to other parts of the body.

  2. What are the common side effects of Cotellic?

    Nausea, vomiting, fatigue, diarrhea, fever, and skin rash are the most common side effects of Cotellic.

  3. Can Cotellic cause liver damage?

    Yes, Cotellic may cause severe liver damage that can be life-threatening. Patients should report any symptoms of jaundice or abdominal pain to their doctor immediately.

  4. Who should not take Cotellic?

    Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant should not take Cotellic, as it can harm the developing fetus. Men who are taking Cotellic should also use effective birth control during treatment and for at least two weeks after the last dose of the drug.

  5. How does Cotellic work?

    Cotellic works by blocking enzymes that cancer cells need to grow and divide, slowing or stopping the growth of cancerous tumors.

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