Aloxi is a prescription medication that is used for preventing nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy or surgery. It comes in an injectable form that is administered through an IV, as well as a capsule form. In one study, when used in patients about to undergo chemotherapy, the injection also worked for preventing "delayed" nausea and vomiting in up to 74 percent of patients. Potential side effects include headache, dizziness, and constipation.
What Is Aloxi?
Aloxi® (palonosetron hydrochloride) is a prescription nausea and vomiting medication. It is approved to prevent nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy or surgery when given by IV before chemotherapy, and a single dose helps to prevent nausea and vomiting for several days. When given by IV just before surgery, a single dose helps prevent nausea and vomiting for up to 24 hours after surgery.
Aloxi is also available in capsule form, approved to prevent nausea and vomiting due to chemotherapy.
Aloxi is manufactured jointly by Catalent Pharma Solutions and Helsinn Birex Pharmaceuticals. It is marketed and distributed by Eisai, Inc.
How Does It Work?
Nausea (upset stomach) and vomiting are complex processes involving many chemicals in the body and several parts of the body, including the brain and the small intestine. It is likely that Aloxi works in the small intestine, but it may also work in the brain.
It works by blocking serotonin, a chemical produced by the body that is associated with nausea and vomiting. Serotonin has many effects in the body and can bind to several different types of receptors. Aloxi blocks serotonin at a specific type of receptor (the 5-HT3 receptor), which is important for nausea and vomiting. It has no effects on other types of serotonin receptors in the body.
Aloxi (at least the injectable version) lasts longer than most other nausea and vomiting medications. This helps to prevent the immediate nausea that can occur within the first day of chemotherapy, as well as nausea and vomiting that can occur in the next few days afterwards (known as "delayed" nausea and vomiting). It is not known if the capsule version lasts as long as the injectable version.
Aloxi Capsules [package insert]. Woodcliff Lake, NJ: Eisai, Inc.;2008 August.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: Approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed July 24, 2007.
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