Log in »

Dabrafenib (da BRAF e nib)

Adult Medication

Brand Names: U.S.

Tafinlar

Brand Names: Canada

Tafinlar

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to treat skin cancer.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take this drug?

  • If you have an allergy to dabrafenib or any other part of this drug.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
This drug may interact with other drugs or health problems.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take this drug with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take this drug?

  • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that you use this drug.
  • This drug may add to the chance of getting some types of cancer. Talk with the doctor.
  • Have your skin checked. Talk with your doctor.
  • Have your blood work checked often. Talk with your doctor.
  • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), you will need to watch your blood sugar closely.
  • Be careful if you have G6PD deficiency. Anemia may happen.
  • Talk with your doctor about drinking lots of fluids and other ways to prevent fluid loss. If you have a lot of fluid loss, you may have more side effects from this drug.
  • Sometimes, dabrafenib is taken with trametinib. If you are taking dabrafenib with trametinib, be sure you know the side effects that can happen with each drug. When these drugs are taken together, the chance of certain side effects may be raised. These side effects can be very bad and sometimes deadly. This includes bleeding, blood clots, eye problems, fever, heart problems (like heart failure), high blood sugar, other cancers, and skin problems. Talk with your doctor about the chance of side effects with your drugs.
  • This drug may affect sperm in men. This may affect being able to father a child. Talk with the doctor.
  • This drug may cause harm to the unborn baby if you take it while you are pregnant.
  • Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may not work as well to prevent pregnancy. Use some other kind of birth control also like a condom when taking this drug.
  • Use birth control that you can trust to prevent pregnancy while taking this drug and for at least 2 weeks after stopping the drug.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug while you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of fluid and electrolyte problems like mood changes, confusion, muscle pain or weakness, a heartbeat that does not feel normal, very bad dizziness or passing out, fast heartbeat, more thirst, seizures, feeling very tired or weak, not hungry, unable to pass urine or change in the amount of urine produced, dry mouth, dry eyes, or very bad upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Signs of high blood sugar like confusion, feeling sleepy, more thirst, more hungry, passing urine more often, flushing, fast breathing, or breath that smells like fruit.
  • Fever or chills.
  • Skin wound that will not heal.
  • Pimples (acne).
  • Any skin change.
  • A new wart.
  • Change in color or size of a mole.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Yellow skin or eyes.
  • Very bad eye problems have happened with this drug. Sometimes, this has led to loss of eyesight. Call your doctor right away if you have blurred eyesight, loss of eyesight, or other changes in eyesight. Call your doctor right away if you see color dots or halos or if bright lights bother you.
  • Eye pain.
  • Eye is bothered by bright light.

If you are taking dabrafenib with trametinib:

  • Signs of bleeding like throwing up blood or throw up that looks like coffee grounds; coughing up blood; blood in the urine; black, red, or tarry stools; bleeding from the gums; vaginal bleeding that is not normal; bruises without a reason or that get bigger; or any bleeding that is very bad or that you cannot stop.
  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Cool or pale arm or leg.
  • Shortness of breath, a big weight gain, swelling in the arms or legs.
  • Swelling, warmth, numbness, change of color, or pain in a leg or arm.
  • A fast heartbeat.
  • A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Very bad headache.
  • Very bad belly pain.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
  • Hair loss.
  • Change in skin to hard and thick.
  • Headache.
  • Muscle or joint pain.
  • Redness or irritation of the palms of hands or soles of feet.
  • Back pain.
  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Cough.
  • Nose and throat irritation.

If you are taking dabrafenib with trametinib:

  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Night sweats.
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Belly pain.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Dizziness.
  • Not hungry.
  • Not able to sleep.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best taken?

Use this drug as ordered by your doctor. Read and follow the dosing on the label closely.
  • Take as you have been told, even if you feel well.
  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
  • Take on an empty stomach. Take 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals.
  • Swallow whole. Do not chew, open, or crush.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is less than 6 hours until the next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to the normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?

  • Store at room temperature.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.

General drug facts

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else’s drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

Last Reviewed Date

2014-03-20

Copyright

Copyright © 2014 Clinical Drug Information, LLC and Lexi-Comp, Inc.