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What you need to know about Fluorouracil

Abnormal, rapid cell growth that spreads to other parts of the body is called cancer. Cancer is a disease that has a high mortality rate and is one of the leading causes of death worldwide.


Cancer can start almost anywhere in the human body; abnormal or damaged cells grow and multiply when they should not. These cells can turn into tumours, they are lumps of tissue. Tumours can be cancerous or not cancerous (benign). Medical science has found multiple ways to deal with cancer and its symptoms. All efforts are made to provide relief to the patients. Chemotherapy is one of the leading treatments which has helped many patients. Fluorouracil is an essential drug used in chemotherapy.

What is Fluorouracil? When is it used?

Fluorouracil is also called 5 Fluorouracil(5FU). It is an antimetabolite and belongs to Pyrimidine analogue class of drugs. It is beneficial in the treatment of many types of cancers.

Fluorouracil is used as an intravenous injection for

  Colorectal cancer
  Oesophageal cancer
  Breast cancer
  Stomach cancer
  Cervical cancer
  Pancreatic cancer

Fluorouracil is used as a cream for certain types of skin cancers like

  Actinic keratosis
  Basal cell carcinoma
  Skin warts

How does Fluorouracil work?

Fluorouracil is a cytotoxic chemotherapy medication. It restricts cancer growth by stopping the cell’s repair and synthesis of DNA, it interferes with processes of the DNA, thus stopping the production of DNA. This helps stop the precancerous or cancerous cells from growing. In the topical treatment form, Fluorouracil works by causing the death of fast-growing abnormal cells. This helps to slow down the growth of cancerous cells.

Dosage for Fluorouracil

Dosage can vary according to different cancer types.
Fluorouracil can be given as an intravenous injection. It is advised to be taken only under medical supervision and as suggested by your doctor.
Fluorouracil is given as part of a course of several cycles of treatment.
Mostly there are up to six cycles of treatment. Each cycle lasts for up to four weeks.
As a topical ointment, a thin coating is applied to the affected skin lesions twice a day, treatment may continue over several weeks.

Common brand names in which Fluorouracil is available are

  Florac by Cadila Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
  Fivoflu by Dabur Pharma Limited.
  Fivocil by Alkem Laboratories Ltd.
  Five Fluro by GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals Ltd.
  Fluracil by Biochem Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

Precautions to take before starting with Fluorouracil

Tell your doctor about all your medical problems. Inform the doctor about all the prescription and OTC medicines you take. The doctor needs to check if it is safe for you to take fluorouracil. Remember you can't use fluorouracil if you have DPD enzyme deficiency, as without this enzyme Fluorouracil may cause severe adverse effects.

  Never stop or change the dose of any drug without the permission of your doctor.
  If you are allergic to Fluorouracil or have any other allergies.
  If you have low blood cell counts
  If you have a low appetite or a poor diet.
  If you are breastfeeding.
  If you are pregnant

Common Side effects of Fluorouracil

All drugs have benefits and minor risks associated. You may experience some side effects or unwanted effects. Inform your doctor if you have any side effects. Side effects of Fluorouracil when taken in the intravenous form

  Alopecia (hair loss)
  Hand-foot syndrome
  Maculopapular eruption
  Persistent hiccups
  Mood disorders irritability, anxiety, depression

Severe side effects of Fluorouracil

  GI ulceration and bleeding
  Nail disorders
  Vein pigmentation
  Cerebellar syndrome
  Visual changes

Side effects of Fluorouracil in the topical form

  Local pain

Adverse effects are common and often mild. They do not need medical attention. If you feel the side effects are harsh and are causing you trouble, you must consult your doctor immediately. Inform the doctor of all the unwanted effects, you experience. The doctor can change the dosage or the medicine according to the requirement.

How to know if Fluorouracil will benefit you?

Your ancestors define your genetic makeup. Genes are a part of DNA. They are passed to you from your parents. The study of how genes influence and affect the body's response to medicines is called pharmacogenetics. Genes are the reason why some drugs work for some people and the same drugs cause adverse effects for others. Pharmacogenetics is a new way to get personalized targeted therapy. MEDNAwise is the Pharmacogenetic test, that can tell you about your response to 70+ drugs. By taking the MEDNAwise test, you can also know if Fluorouracil will give you the desired results or not. MEDNAwise helps you figure out the medicines and the dosages that would be the most effective for you. It can also predict if your body will give a severe response or show any adverse effects.

MEDNAwise is revolutionary as it can help doctors eliminate the traditional approach of the trialand-error method to find the best-suited drug for you. It reduces the chances of therapeutic failure and the risk of adverse drug reactions. The test results make it easy for your doctor to find the bestsuited drug for you. MEDNAwise is useful for genetic and somatic applications. It is an important tool in the field of precision medicine. MEDNAwise is truly beneficial in the long run. The results of this test are helpful for future medical problems and help in medical emergencies. Since you and the doctor would already know the best-suited drug, treatment is faster and more effective. MEDNAwise is an easy-to-take no blood, no prick, saliva-swab test. It can be done from the comfort of your home, and in a few minutes. After the results, the genetic counsellors are ready to help you with further plans of action.

With MEDNAwise pharmacogenetic testing, medical science has reached new heights. You should take advantage of these personalized treatment solutions. It makes your life easy and stress-free. Now, is the time, to make health your highest priority.
Book your MEDNAwise test and a counselling session today!

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