Generic Name: cyproterone acetate
Product Name: Androcur-100
Indication: What Androcur-100 is used for
Androcur-100 is an anti-androgen medicine. Androgens such as testosterone are natural male sex hormones. In some types of prostate cancer, androgens may help the cancer cells to grow. By blocking these hormones, Androcur-100 may slow or stop the growth of cancer.
Androcur-100 may be used in combination with other medicines or following surgical removal of the testes to treat side effects such as hot flushes or sweats and to prevent any initial worsening of the disease.
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why this medicine has been prescribed for you. Your doctor may have prescribed it for another reason.
This medicine is available only with a doctor’s prescription.
Action: How Androcur-100 works
Androcur-100 is an antiandrogenic hormone preparation.
Cyproterone acetate inhibits competitively the effect of androgens at androgen-dependent target organs, e.g. it shields the prostate from the effect of androgens originating from the gonads and/or the adrenal cortex. Prostatic carcinoma and its metastases are in general androgen-dependent. Cyproterone acetate, therefore, exerts a direct antiandrogenic action on the tumour and its metastases.
Cyproterone acetate, in addition, has a progestogenic action exerting a negative feedback effect centrally on the hypothalamic receptors, so leading to a reduction in gonadotropin release, and hence to diminished production of testicular androgens. Treatment with cyproterone acetate in men results in a reduction of sexual drive and potency and inhibition of gonadal function. These changes are reversible following discontinuation of the therapy.
The antigonadotropic effect of cyproterone acetate is also exerted when the substance is combined with LHRH agonists. The initial increase of testosterone provoked by this substance group is decreased by cyproterone acetate.
Androcur-100 contains 100 mg of the active ingredient cyproterone acetate.
It also contains the inactive ingredients lactose, corn starch, povidone, and magnesium stearate.
Dose advice: How to use Androcur-100
Before you take Androcur-100
When you must not take it
Do not take Androcur-100 if you have an allergy to:
- Cyproterone acetate, the active ingredient in Androcur-100;
- Any of the ingredients listed here.
Some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:
- Shortness of breath;
- Wheezing or difficulty breathing;
- Swelling of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body;
- Rash, itching or hives on the skin.
Do not take Androcur-100 if you have any of the following medical conditions:
- Liver disease, previous or existing liver tumours unless they are caused by metastases from prostate cancer (your doctor would have told you if you have this);
- Dubin-Johnson syndrome or Rotor syndrome (your doctor would have told you if you have either of these conditions);
- Previous or existing benign brain tumour (meningioma);
- Wasting disease (a disease causing muscle loss or loss of strength, with the exception of prostate cancer);
- Severe and persistent depression;
- Existing conditions relating to the formation of blood clots.
Androcur-100 should only be taken by men. It should not be taken by women or children and adolescents below 18 years of age.
Androcur-100 tablets contain lactose. If you have been told by your doctor that you have an intolerance to some sugars, contact your doctor before taking Androcur-100.
Do not take this medicine after the expiry date printed on the pack and blister. The expiry date is printed on the carton and on each blister after “EXP” (e.g. 11 18 refers to November 2018). The expiry date refers to the last day of that month. If it has expired return it to your pharmacist for disposal.
Do not take this medicine if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering. If the packaging is damaged, return it to your pharmacist for disposal.
If you are not sure whether you should start taking this medicine, talk to your doctor.
Before you start to take it
Tell your doctor if you have allergies to any other medicines, foods, preservatives or dyes.
Tell your doctor if you have or have had any medical conditions, especially the following:
- History of blood clotting or sickle cell anaemia;
- Osteoporosis, a family history of osteoporosis or risk factors for developing osteoporosis (such as smoking, a diet low in calcium, poor mobility, a slight build or treatment with steroid medicines).
Tell your doctor if fertility after treatment is important. It is recommended that a sperm count is taken to establish fertility before commencing Androcur-100. It can take 3-20 months for fertile sperm production to be reestablished after stopping this medicine.
If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell them before you start taking Androcur-100.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including any that you buy without a prescription from your pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
Some medicines and Androcur-100 may interfere with each other. These include:
- Phenytoin, a medicine used to treat epilepsy;
- Medicines used to treat fungal infections, including ketoconazole, itraconazole, clotrimazole;
- Ritonavir, a medicine used in the treatment of HIV;
- Rifampicin, an antibiotic used to treat infections such as tuberculosis and leprosy;
- St John’s wort, a herbal remedy used to treat mood disorders;
- Statins (HMG-CoA inhibitors), medicines used to lower cholesterol levels in people with or at risk of cardiovascular disease;
- Medicines used to treat diabetes.
These medicines may be affected by Androcur-100 or may affect how well it works. You may need different amounts of your medicine, or you may need to take different medicines.
Your doctor and pharmacist may have more information on medicines to be careful with or avoid while taking this medicine.
How to take Androcur-100
Follow all directions given to you by your doctor or pharmacist carefully. They may differ from the information contained in this leaflet.
If you do not understand the instructions printed on the pharmacist label, ask your doctor or pharmacist for help.
How much to take
Your doctor will tell you the dose that you should take. The usual daily dose is 50-300 mg of Androcur-100. Your doctor may request you take Androcur-100 with other medicines and/or change your dose during treatment.
Do not alter the dose yourself. Your doctor will advise you if changing the dose is necessary.
Shortness of breath may occur at high doses.
How to take it
Swallow the tablets whole with some liquid after meals.
When to take it
Take your medicine after meals at about the same time each day. Taking it at the same time each day will have the best effect. It will also help you remember when to take it. Missed Androcur-100 tablets may diminish the effectiveness of treatment.
How long to take it
Continue taking your medicine for as long as your doctor tells you.
This medicine helps to control your condition but does not cure it. It is important to keep taking your medicine even if you feel well.
If you forget to take it
If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take your next dose when you are meant to.
Otherwise, take it as soon as you remember, and then go back to taking your medicine as you would normally.
Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose that you missed. This may increase the chance of you getting an unwanted side effect.
If you are not sure what to do, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
If you have trouble remembering to take your medicine, ask your pharmacist for some hints.
If you take too much (overdose)
Immediately telephone your doctor or the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 for advice, or go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest hospital, if you think that you or anyone else may have taken too much Androcur-100. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. You may need urgent medical attention.
While you are taking Androcur-100
Things you must do
If you are about to be started on any new medicine, remind your doctor and pharmacist that you are taking Androcur-100.
Tell any other doctors, dentists, and pharmacists who treat you that you are taking this medicine.
Keep all of your doctor’s appointments so that your progress can be checked. Your doctor may do some tests from time to time to make sure the medicine is working and to prevent unwanted side effects.
Your doctor will check your liver function during treatment with Androcur-100 and whenever any symptoms or signs suggesting liver problems are observed.
If you have diabetes, your doctor will monitor you to ensure that you receive the appropriate dose of oral antidiabetic or insulin whilst taking Androcur-100.
Your doctor will also check your red-blood-cell count to ensure you do not become anaemic during treatment with Androcur-100.
Things you must not do
Do not take Androcur-100 to treat any other complaints unless your doctor tells you to.
Do not give your medicine to anyone else, even if they have the same condition as you.
Do not stop taking your medicine or lower the dosage without checking with your doctor. If you stop taking it suddenly, your condition may worsen or you may have unwanted side effects.
Things to be careful of
Be careful driving or operating machinery until you know how Androcur-100 affects you. This medicine may cause tiredness and can impair the ability to concentrate. If you have any of these symptoms, do not drive, operate machinery or do anything else that could be dangerous.
Be careful when drinking alcohol while you are taking this medicine. If you drink alcohol, tiredness and the ability to concentrate may be worse. The effectiveness of Androcur-100 to reduce abnormal sex drive can also be diminished under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol may prevent Androcur-100 from working as well as it should in reducing abnormal sex drive.
After taking Androcur-100
Keep your tablets in the pack until it is time to take them. If you take the tablets out of the pack, they may not keep well.
Keep your tablets in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 30°C. Do not store Androcur-100 or any other medicine in the bathroom, near a sink or on a windowsill. Do not leave it in the car. Heat and damp can destroy some medicines.
Keep it where children cannot reach it. A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place to store medicines.
If your doctor tells you to stop taking this medicine or the expiry date has passed, ask your pharmacist what to do with any medicine that is left over.
Return any unused medicine to your pharmacist.
Schedule of Androcur-100
Androcur 100 is a Schedule 4 medicine (prescription only).
Side effects of Androcur-100
Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are taking Androcur-100. All medicines can have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time they are not. You may need medical treatment if you get some of the side effects.
Do not be alarmed by the following lists of side effects. You may not experience any of them.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist to answer any questions you may have.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you notice any of the following and they worry you:
- Tiredness, fatigue;
- Weight change;
- Depressive mood;
- Nausea and other gastrointestinal complaints;
- Decreased sexual drive;
- Breast pain, change in breast size, breast swelling and/or tenderness;
- Breast enlargement in men;
- Hot flushes, sweating;
- Shortness of breath;
If you were fertile before treatment, Androcur-100 will normally prevent sperm production. Fertility is usually regained within a few months of discontinuing therapy.
Androcur-100 will also normally result in the inability to get or maintain an erection (impotence). This ability is usually also regained within a few months of discontinuing therapy.
The above includes the more common side effects of your medicine.
Tell your doctor immediately or go to Accident and Emergency at your nearest hospital if you notice any of the following:
- Yellowing of the skin and/or eyes, light coloured bowel motions, dark coloured urine;
- Severe upper abdominal pain;
- Vomiting blood or material that looks like coffee grounds, bleeding from the back passage, black sticky bowel motions (stools) or bloody diarrhoea;
- Sudden severe headache, loss of vision, loss of coordination, slurred speech, shortness of breath, chest pain, numbness, heat or swelling in the arms and legs.
The above list includes serious side effects that may require medical attention or hospitalisation. Serious side effects are rare.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you notice anything that is making you feel unwell. Other side effects not listed above may happen in some people.
For further information talk to your doctor.