Ibrance (Palbociclib): Uses, Side Effects, Dosage & FAQs

Ibrance is the brand name for the generic drug Palbociclib [1]. This medicine belongs to a group of second-generation cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CDK) 4/6 inhibitors.

Palbociclib is used in combination with letrozole (Femara) as initial endocrine therapy for the treatment of human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) and hormone receptor (HR) positive breast tumors in adult cancer patients.

Palbociclib is developed by Pfizer for the treatment of cancer and there is no other generic medicine available on this drug.

It is also approved in combination with fulvestrant in patients with progressive disease receiving prior endocrine therapy.

You will need to take it with or without food and can be used concurrently with proton pump inhibitors to avoid GI distress.

Don’t crush or chew the tablet before administration. swallowed it as a whole with a glass of water.

The Ibrance cost depends on the pharmacy you are getting but generally, it is around 13007$ for 21 capsules. Ibrance is not covered by insurance and the price is for regular customers.

Ibrance

Ibrance Uses

It is used in combination with other drugs to treat the following conditions.

  • Ibrance alone is used to treat advanced (metastatic) breast cancer.
  • In combination with other medications used to treat HR-positive breast cancer.
  • Also used to treat HER2-negative advanced or metastatic breast cancer.

How Effective is Ibrance?

The product effectiveness was evaluated by 2 clinical trials. According to the results of those clinical trials, Ibrance was appeared to significantly slow the movement of advanced, HR-positive, HER2-negative breast cancer. Progression implies the spreading or deterioration of cancer growth.

The first study looks at ladies whose cancer had returned or spread after hormone treatment. These women were given fulvestrant. They took fulvestrant either with Ibrance or with a placebo.

Women who took Ibrance with fulvestrant had a 54% lower danger of their cancer progression contrasted with ladies who took fulvestrant with a placebo. Ibrance was twice as effective as a placebo treatment at postponing disease movement in this study.

The subsequent looks at postmenopausal ladies who hadn’t just had hormone treatment for their breast cancer. A portion of these women took Ibrance with letrozole. Other ladies took letrozole with placebo treatment.

Women who took Ibrance with Femara (letrozole) had a 42% lower danger of their cancer progressing contrasted with women who took letrozole with a placebo treatment.


Ibrance Mechanism

Cancer cells grow uncontrollably. Ibrance is an inhibitor of cyclodependent kinase (CDK) 4/6. A kinase is a type of protein in the body that helps control cell division. CDK 4/6 inhibitors work by disrupting the kinase and preventing cancer cells from dividing and developing.

Ibrance in Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

It is approved only for menopausal women. However, it is important to know that pregnant women or those planning pregnancy should not take this medicine.  You mustn’t become pregnant while taking Palbociclib. You must use an effective contraceptive method while taking it and at least two weeks after the last dose.

Women who are breastfeeding or who intend to breastfeed should not take Palbociclib. Together, you and your doctor will decide if you want to take it or breastfeed.

Ibrance Side Effects

The most common and serious side effects of Ibrance are:

  • Upper respiratory infection
  • Low blood counts.
  • Fatigue
  • Frequent infection

These are less common Ibrance side effects are

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Mouth sores
  • Hair loss/thinning
  • Weakness
  • Decreased appetite
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Nosebleeds

Precautions

Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are

  • Allergy to palbociclib, another medicine,, or any of the ingredients in palbociclib capsules.
  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist what herbal products you are taking, especially St. John’s wort.
  • Tell your doctor if you have an infection or if you have or have liver or kidney disease.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you are taking this medicine.
  • Talk to your doctor about your medical history, especially about neutropenia.

Contraindications

It is contraindicated in the following conditions.

  • Hypersensitivity reactions to this drug or any other ingredients.
  • Pregnancy
  • Breastfeeding
  • It is contraindicated in fungal infections.

Ibrance Dosage

Take this medication with a meal prescribed by your doctor. Usually once a day for 21 days. Then take medicine for 7 days. This is a treatment cycle. Continue taking this medication as directed by your doctor. Swallow the capsules whole. Do not crush, chew, or open the capsules.

Do not carry any broken or damaged capsules with you. If you vomit after taking it, do not take another dose of the medication that day. Take the next dose at the usual time of the next day.

  • The recommended initial dose of Ibrance is 125 mg once a day with food for 21 consecutive days, followed by 7 days without treatment. IBRANCE should be taken with food.
  • When used concomitantly with Ibrance, the recommended dose of fulvestrant is 500 mg taken on Days 1, 15, 29, and once monthly thereafter. Please consult the complete dosing information of fulvestrant.

The dose depends on your health status, laboratory tests, response to treatment,, and other medications you take. Be sure to tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, and herbal products). If you notice any side effects, your doctor may stop your treatment for a while or reduce your dose. Talk to your doctor to get more information.

It is available in 3 different dosage forms and strengths.

  • 125 mg capsules
  • 100 mg capsules
  • 75 mg capsules

Ibrance is also available in tablet form in the same strengths.

Use this medication regularly to make the most of it. At the same time, take it simultaneously when you take medicine to remember it.

Do not increase your dose, and do not use this medication more often or for longer than expected. Your condition will not improve faster and will increase the risk of serious side effects.

Interactions

You should not take a type of medicine called a CYP3A inhibitor because it increases this drug’s effects.

CYP3A includes antifungal medicines such as

Antiretroviral drugs used to treat HIV such as

  • Lopinavir and
  • Ritonavir

You should not take a type of drug called a CYP3A inducer because it decreases this medicine’s effects. This class of medicines includes

It would help if you did not take with a herb like St. John’s wort because it can decrease the effects of Ibrance.

It would help if you did not eat grapefruit or pomegranate or drink grapefruit juice or pomegranate juice because they can increase this medicine’s effects.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is Ibrance?

Ibrance (Palbociclib) is a prescription drug and belongs to a group of second-generation cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CDK) 4/6 inhibitors.

2. What is Ibrance used to treat?

It is used in combination with an aromatase inhibitor such as Femara for the treatment of advanced or metastatic breast cancer, which is positive for the hormone receptor, HER2-negative, which has not been previously treated in postmenopausal women with hormone therapy. It is also used in combination with a fulvestrant to treat HER2-negative advanced or metastatic breast cancer, with positive hormone receptors grown after hormonal therapy in postmenopausal women.

3. How long can you take Ibrance?

It is taken orally during a 4-week cycle as a daily dose. In the first 3 weeks (21 days), take an Ibrance pill once a day.

4. How does Ibrance work?

Ibrance is an inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK) 4 and 6. A kinase is a type of protein in the body that helps to control cell division. The cancer cells grow uncontrollably, and Ibrance works by interfering with the kinase to prevent cancer cells from dividing and growing.

5. How to take Ibrance?

It is taken orally once daily with an aromatase inhibitor or fulvestrant. You should take Ibrance at about the same time each day and swallow as a whole. If you forget or vomit a dose after one dose, take the next prescribed dose at the usual time.

6. Should Ibrance be taken with food?

This medicine should be taken after the meal.

7. What should I avoid when taking Ibrance?

If you are being treated with this medicine, do not take Ibrance to treat other conditions, Unless The doctor instructs you.

Do not share this medicine with third parties, even if they have the same condition as you.

Do not Lower the dose without consulting your doctor.

8. Is there a generic for Ibrance?

Yes, it is a brand, and the generic is Palbociclib. It belongs to a group of drugs known as cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor (CDK) 4/6 inhibitors.

9. What are the side effects of Ibrance?

The common side effects are nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite, dry mouth, etc., while serious side effects include Upper respiratory infection, Low blood counts, Fatigue.
10. Is Palbociclib a form of chemotherapy?

Palbociclib is used to treat a specific type of breast cancer in women. It is chemotherapy that slows down or stops the growth of cancer cells.

11. Can I use the Ibrance tablet when I’m pregnant?

Women who are pregnant or planning pregnancy should not take Palbociclib. Doctors do not know if Ibrance harms her baby before birth. You mustn’t become pregnant while taking Palbociclib.

12. Can I use Ibrance while breastfeeding?

Women who are breastfeeding or who intend to breastfeed should not take Ibrance. Your doctor will decide together if you want to take Ibrance or breastfeed.

13. What happens if I forget a dose of Ibrance?

Skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose on the same day to make up for the missed dose.

14. What is the dose for the Ibrance?

The usual recommended starting dose of Ibrance is 125 mg once daily with food for 21 consecutive days, followed by 7 days of treatment. Check for more

15. How to store Ibrance?

Keep this medicine in the container where it is well closed and inaccessible to children. Store it at room temperature and away from excessive heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).

16. What happens if I overdose on Ibrance?

Call your doctor or the poison information center immediately. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. You may need urgent medical attention.


References

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