Granisetron is used to stop nausea and vomiting that result from radiation and chemotherapy for cancer. It belongs to a group of medicines known as 5-HT3 receptor antagonists. It works by inhibiting the action at serotonin receptors. Serotonin is a natural chemical in the body that induces nausea and vomiting.
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Granisetron is a prescription-only medicine. It is administered as a tablet to take orally and as a solution for intravenous (IV) or subcutaneous (SC) injection.
It is usually given on the day of chemotherapy or radiation treatment.
The recommended oral dose for Granisetron is 2 mg taken once daily, up to an hour before chemotherapy. Alternatively, a dose of 1 mg orally can be taken twice a day, with the first dosage taken an hour before chemotherapy and the second dosage 12 hours later. The duration of the therapy is limited to the day(s) when the chemotherapy is being administered.
The patient must take the medication in the specified dosage as instructed by the doctor.
Chemical components present in Granisetron may cause allergic reactions or other complications. It should not be prescribed if the patient is allergic to it.
Granisetron may cause dizziness or drowsiness. It is advised to take caution if driving or handling heavy machinery while using the medication.
Depending on several factors, including the patient’s medical history, the doctor determines if it is safe to prescribe. As such, the doctor needs to be informed of the following-
- history of heart diseases;
- a heart rhythm disorder or a family history of QT syndrome;
- an electrolyte imbalance in the blood; or
- recent stomach or intestinal surgery.
Common side effects may include:
- headache, weakness;
- diarrhoea, constipation;
- stomach pain, indigestion, lack of appetite;
- sleeplessness; or
- fever, symptoms of flu.
Some severe side effects are the following –
- hives, rash or itching
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
- shortness of breath
- dizziness, light-headedness, or fainting
- fast, slow or irregular heartbeat
- visual and aural hallucinations
- nausea, vomiting, or diarrhoea
- lack of coordination
- stiff or twitching muscles
Patients should inform the doctor about any side effects they experience. They must seek emergency medical help if they experience signs of an allergic reaction; difficulty breathing; or swelling of their face, lips, tongue, or throat.
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Anzen Export’s blog posts have been written with information gathered from approved medical journals and websites online. Our research and technical team strive to provide relevant information through such articles. To be best informed, we advise consulting a doctor about an ingredient or medicine before taking it.