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Cancer – Chemotherapy Interactions

February 2, 2021


Chemotherapy, like any other drug, is what we call metabolized, or turned into something that makes it active in your body. It’s also metabolized and cleared in your body. It’s usually done by one of two organs, the liver or the kidneys. And in the liver, you have a bunch of enzymes that basically make this chemotherapy work. A huge problem we run into is what happens when you’re taking another medication that wants to use those same enzymes or tools to help break them down that your chemotherapy is trying to use. It can get very complicated in that sometimes it can make chemotherapy enhanced, or it could make chemotherapy less effective. Some things that you really want to use caution about are antibiotics, your nausea meds, which your oncologist should be looking at. Ondansetron is very common one, as well as promethazine. And then also antidepressants, believe it or not, anxiety meds like fluoxetine can interfere with a lot of those things. So there are drug interaction checkers that you can just Google, drug interaction checker, and ask your doctors to see if those antibiotics and those chemos may affect the efficacy or enhance based on what you’re taking.

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