Fluorouracil (Systemic): Uses & Sides Effects

Fluorouracil is used to treat colorectal cancer, breast cancer, stomach cancer, pancreatic cancer.

How is this medicine (Fluorouracil) best taken?

Use fluorouracil (systemic) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • It is given as an infusion into a vein over a period of time.
  • It may be given as a shot into a vein.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Fluorouracil?

If you have an allergy to fluorouracil or any other part of fluorouracil (systemic).

If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.

If you have any of these health problems: An infection, low blood cell counts, or poor diet.

If you are breast-feeding. Do not breast-feed while you take fluorouracil (systemic).

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with fluorouracil (systemic).

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take fluorouracil (systemic) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take Fluorouracil?

Tell all of your health care providers that you take fluorouracil (systemic). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.

You may have more chance of getting an infection. Wash hands often. Stay away from people with infections, colds, or flu.

You may bleed more easily. Be careful and avoid injury. Use a soft toothbrush and an electric razor.

If you have upset stomach, throwing up, diarrhea, or are not hungry, talk with your doctor. There may be ways to lower these side effects.

If diarrhea or throwing up happens, talk with the doctor. You will need to make sure to avoid dehydration and electrolyte problems.

Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.

The chance of severe and sometimes deadly side effects is raised in patients who do not have the enzyme dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (DPD) in the body. These include mouth irritation or sores, diarrhea, low white blood cell counts, or nerve problems.

This medicine may cause heart problems like heart attack, heart failure, and an abnormal heartbeat. These effects may be more common in people who have had heart disease before. Talk with the doctor.

If you are taking warfarin, talk with your doctor. You may need to have your blood work checked more closely while you are taking it with fluorouracil (systemic).

Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines. Use of some vaccines with fluorouracil (systemic) may either raise the chance of an infection or make the vaccine not work as well.

You may get sunburned more easily. Avoid sun, sunlamps, and tanning beds. Use sunscreen and wear clothing and eyewear that protects you from the sun.

This medicine may affect fertility. Fertility problems may lead to not being able to get pregnant or father a child. Talk with the doctor.

If you are a man and have sex with a female who could get pregnant, protect her from pregnancy during care and for 3 months after care ends. Use birth control that you can trust.

If you are a man and your sex partner gets pregnant while you take fluorouracil (systemic) or within 3 months after your last dose, call your doctor right away.

This medicine may cause harm to the unborn baby if you take it while you are pregnant.

Use birth control that you can trust to prevent pregnancy while taking fluorouracil (systemic) and for 3 months after care ends.

If you get pregnant while taking fluorouracil (systemic) or within 3 months after your last dose, call your doctor right away.

Side Effects

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Not hungry.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Mouth irritation or mouth sores.
  • Hair loss.
  • Dry skin.
  • Change in nails.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Keywords: fluorouracil.

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.