Anti-nausea: Kytril / Granisetron

Kytril® (generic name Granisetron) is a drug used to fight nausea (wanting to vomit - the medical term for a drug to prevent nausea is antiemetic). The injectable form was approved by the US FDA for chemotherapy induced nausea in December 1993. It has since been used for radiation therapy induced nausea.

What does Kytril do?

Kytril is a selective blocking agent of the serotonin 5-HT3 receptor. In plain speak serotonin is released by the small intestine when given chemotherapy (and possibly in reaction to other events). This triggers the vomiting reflex. If this mechanism can be blocked with drugs such as Kytril, vomiting can be reduced or eliminated.

Other tidbits

Kytril drug has been hailed by many cancer patients as a miracle in keeping nausea in check. This comes at a price - the drug is expensive. Insurance, if you have it, may cover some of the cost.

Forms of this drug

Kytril comes in injectable (by vein) and oral (by mouth) form. The injectable form is often given in conjunction with chemotherapy. The oral form is suited for doctor prescribed patient use after chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

Dosing

Please refer to your doctor on dosing for this drug given your condition. The medicine should not be given to others or us it for conditions not prescribed by your medical team. Seek medical attention on overdose.

Side Effects

Kytril may cause headache, constipation, weakness, drowsiness, or diarrhea. Don't operate machinery until you know how you react to this drug. You will want to discuss with your doctor the use of this drug if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

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