Doxil (doxorubicin) Side Effects

Doxil is a chemotherapy drug that is better known by its generic name, doxorubicin liposomal, or just doxorubicin.

Doxil is approved by the US Food & Drug Administration for the treatment of ovarian cancer when the disease has progressed following platinum-based chemotherapy; for AIDS-related Kaposi's Sarcoma following the failure of other systemic chemotherapy options; and for treatment naïve patients with multiple myeloma in combination with bortezomib.

However, doxorubicin is also widely used off-label in lymphomas, most notably in the ABVD combination chemotherapy regimen against Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Doxil is an anthracycline, a class of drugs that are notorious for causing cardiovascular problems. In other words it is bad for the heart and there is a dose-related risk of heart failure from Doxil.

Doxil has a toxic profile that is pretty well understood. It is common for people to experience some side effects in receiving it, but not everybody will experience side effects. For those that do, whether the side effects are serious or less serious, the patient should always tell his or her doctor about them and allow the doctor to draw conclusions as to whether the drug should be continued or not.

Serious Side Effects of Doxil

The following side effects of Doxil are considered serious enough that, should they be experienced, it is important to notify one's doctor or health care professional as soon as possible.

  • Any indication of an allergic reaction: Hives, problems breathing; the swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Signs of an infection: fever, chills, sore throat, mouth pain, development of white patches or sores inside the mouth or on the lips
  • Paleness of the skin, light-headedness, feeling short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating
  • Easy bruising or unusual bleeding
  • Numbness, burning, pain, or tingly feeling
  • Shortness of breath
  • Ceased menstrual cycle of changes to it
  • Black, tarry, loose or bloody stools
  • Sever or persistent nausea
  • Redness, pain, swelling, peeling, tingling, or blistering of the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet
  • Unexplained weight gain
  • Symptoms of dehydration such as dry mouth, decreased urination, sluggishness, fast heartbeat
  • Back pain
  • Bluish skin or finger/toe nails
  • Calf or leg pain, swelling or tenderness

Common Side Effects of Doxil

The following is an incomplete list of common side effects associated with Doxil. Just because they are common does not mean they should not be reported to one's doctor. All side effects should be reported when they occur.

  • Hair loss (temporary)
  • Loss of appetite
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Indigestion
  • Weakness
  • Weight changes

More Articles

More Articles

The term NK T cell lymphoma refers to one of two subtypes of lymphoma that affect the NK (Natural Killer)...

Canine lymphoma is a fairly common cancer in American dogs. The most commonly seen lymphoma in America is a type called Lymphosarcoma, although...

Prednisone is a glucocorticosteroid (a steroid) used in the treatment of many types of cancers. It functions as an anti-inflammatory medicine that...

Marginal zone lymphomas (MZL) are indolent lymphomas that affect the B-cells. The...

Large Cell Lymphoma (LCL) is typically an aggressive (fast growing) cancer of either the B cell or T cell type. They are one of the most common...

A B cell is a type of lymphocyte that produces antibodies to fight infections. These are the most prevalent lymphocytes in the bloodstream and are...

Aggressive Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphomas (NHLs) are fast growing cancers (as opposed to indolent cancers). They involve...

A lymphoma prognosis varies greatly depending on the type of lymphoma. There are more than 35 types of lymphoma, including 5 types of...

What causes lymphoma is not well known. DNA mutations may be what causes lymphoma to develop but what triggers these mutations is...

Often the one who makes the first diagnosis of Hodgkin's Lymphoma / Disease is the person affected. There are some...

Lymphedema is abnormal swelling due to the presence of excess lymphatic fluid within the tissues. This swelling occurs when the...

RICE is an acronym for an anti-cancer treatment that expresses a combination chemotherapeutic regimen. This regimen is written variously as "R+ICE...

Hodgkin's Disease—also referred to as Hodgkin's Lymphoma, these are the exact same diseases, just...

Lymphoma is a cancer affecting the white blood cells (lymphocytes) of the body's immune system. The cells begin to grow abnormally and much faster...

Canine lymphoma, just like lymphoma in humans, can be separated into stages,...