Meds and you

Updated 11 February 2013

Dolasetron

Dolasetron is an anti-emetic medication - a drug that prevents or alleviates nausea and vomiting.

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Dolasetron is the active ingredient of Navoban.

General information

Dolasetron is an anti-emetic medication - a drug that prevents or alleviates nausea and vomiting. It is prescribed to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy. Dolasetron can also be used to prevent these symptoms following surgery and radiation. It does not have much effect on vomiting due to motion sickness.

Dolasetron is very expensive and it is not known whether it is more effective than other drug combinations for the same condition.

How does dolasetron work?

The exact mechanism is unclear, but it is thought that chemotherapeutic agents and radiation may cause release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter, in the small intestine. Dolasetron blocks its effect on serotonin receptors in the small intestines and brain, where it is thought to trigger nausea and vomiting.

Fast facts

Drug schedule: Schedule 4

Available as: Injection and tablets.

What does it do? Dolasetron has an anti-nausea effect

Overdose risk: Low

Dependence risk: Low

Available as a generic? No

Available on prescription only? Yes

User information

Onset of effect: Within 1 hour.

Duration of action: Up to 24 hours.

Stopping this medicine: Dolasetron can be safely stopped when no longer needed.

Prolonged use: This drug is generally prescribed for short-term use only.

Special precautions

Alert your doctor before using this drug if:

  • you have a kidney or liver disease,
  • you have heart disease or heart rhythm disturbance, or
  • you are taking other medication.

Pregnancy: Avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your baby. Consult your doctor before using this drug, or if you are planning to fall pregnant

Breastfeeding: Avoid. This medication is passed through breast milk and may affect your baby adversely. Consult your doctor before use.

Porphyria: Avoid. It is unknown how this medication may affect your condition. Consult your doctor before use.

Infants and children: This medication should only be prescribed by a paediatrician and is not recommended for use in children under the age of 2 years.

Elderly: No special precautions need to be taken.

Driving and hazardous work: Caution is advised as use of this medication may lead to dizziness, light-headedness and/or sedation. Avoid such activities until you know how it affects you.

Alcohol: No special precautions need to be taken.

Possible side effects

Interactions

Side effect

Frequency

Consult your doctor

Common

Rare

Only if severe

In all cases

Headache

X

Flushing/ chills

X

x

Diarrhoea/ constipation

X

x

Skin rash

x

X

Dizziness, drowsiness

x

x

Fatigue

X

X

Change in perception of taste

x

X

Blurred vision

x

X

Palpitations

x

X

Jaundice

x

X

Convulsions

x

X

Interactions:

Drug interactions:

No serious drug interactions are known.

Disease interactions

  • Consult your doctor before using this drug if you have heart disease or heart rhythm disturbance, or if you have a kidney or liver disease

Overdose action

A small overdose is no cause for concern. In case of intentional large overdose, seek emergency medical attention.

Recommended dosage

Adults: 50-200mg once a day.

This material is not intended to substitute medical advice, but is for informational purposes only. Please consult a physician for specific treatment and recommendations.

 

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