This medicine contains ondansetron, which belongs to a group of medicines called anti-emetics, which help to stop you feeling or being sick. Ondansetron is used to treat nausea (feeling sick) and vomiting (being sick) caused by some medical treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy for cancer (in adults and children). It is also used to prevent nausea and vomiting in patients following an operation (adults only).
Class: Selective 5-HT3 Receptor Antagonist
I.V.: Prevention of nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of emetogenic cancer chemotherapy (including high-dose cisplatin); prevention of postoperative nausea and/or vomiting (PONV); treatment of PONV if no prophylactic dose of ondansetron received
Oral: Prevention of nausea and vomiting associated with highly emetogenic cancer chemotherapy (including high-dose cisplatin); prevention of nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of moderately emetogenic cancer chemotherapy; prevention of nausea and vomiting associated with radiotherapy (either total body irradiation, single high-dose fraction to the abdomen, or daily fractions to the abdomen); prevention of PONV
Do not take Ondansetron
• If you are allergic to ondansetron or any of the other ingredients of this medicine.
• If you have ever had any allergic (hypersensitive) reaction with other anti-emetics (for example granisetron or dolasetron)
• If you are taking apomorphine (used to treat Parkinson’s disease)
Pregnancy and breast-feeding
You should not use Ondansetron during the first trimester of pregnancy. This is because Ondansetron can slightly increase the risk of a baby being born with cleft lip and/or cleft palate (openings or splits in the upper lip and/or the roof of the mouth). If you are already pregnant, think you might be pregnant or are planning to have a baby, ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice before taking Ondansetron. If you are a woman of childbearing potential you may be advised to use effective contraception.
Do not breast-feed if you are taking Ondansetron. This is because small amounts pass into the mother’s milk. Ask your doctor or midwife for advice.
How to take Ondansetron
Always take this medicine exactly as described in this leaflet or as your doctor or pharmacist has told you. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure.
Treatment of sickness (nausea and vomiting) in patients receiving chemotherapy or radiotherapy:
Adults (including the elderly): The usual dose is 8 mg of Ondansetron 1 to 2 hours before chemotherapy or radiotherapy, followed by 8 mg of Ondansetron 12 hours later.
To protect against delayed, or further, sickness a dose of 8 mg of Ondansetron may be continued twice a day for up to 5 days after treatment.
Infants and Children (aged 6 months and over) and adolescents (under 18 years old):
Your doctor will decide what dose of Ondansetron should be given. This will depend on the size and weight of the child.
Patients with liver problems:
The total daily dose should not be more than 8 mg.
To prevent sickness (nausea and vomiting) after an operation:
Adults: The usual dose is 16 mg before your operation or an 8 mg tablet one hour before the operation, then another 8 mg tablet eight hours after the first dose, then a further 8 mg tablet eight hours after the second dose
If you are sick (vomit) within one hour of taking an 8 mg dose: Take another 8mg tablet
Possible side effects
Like all medicines, this medicine can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.
If any of the following effects happen, stop taking your tablets and tell your doctor immediately:
• An allergic reaction. The symptoms may include:
– Sudden wheezing and chest pain or tightness
– Swelling of the eyelids, face, lips, mouth tongue or throat
– Difficulty breathing
– Skin rash
• Fits (seizures)
• Chest pain
• Temporary loss of vision which usually comes back within 20 minutes