Cancer Home > Zolinza Overdose

If you take too much Zolinza (vorinostat), seek immediate medical treatment. Some of the complications that may occur include vomiting, internal bleeding, or anemia. The specific effects, however, will depend on how much of the drug was taken and other factors. Treating a Zolinza overdose may involve administering certain medications, pumping the stomach, and providing supportive care.

Can You Take Too Much Zolinza?

Zolinza® (vorinostat) is a prescription medication approved to treat skin problems caused by cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. As with most medicines, it is probably possible to take too much Zolinza.
The specific effects of an overdose can vary, depending on a number of factors, including the Zolinza dosage and whether it was combined with any other medications or substances.

Effects of an Overdose

It is not entirely clear what to expect from an overdose with this medication, as there have not been any reported cases. Based on clinical studies that involved doses higher than the normally recommended amount, as well as the usual side effects of the medicine, an overdose of Zolinza could cause the following symptoms:
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Muscle spasms
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Dangerously low platelet counts, which would increase the risk for internal bleeding
  • Anemia (low red blood cells)
  • Increased blood sugar (hyperglycemia).

Treatment for a Zolinza Overdose

If the overdose was recent, a healthcare provider may administer activated charcoal or "pump the stomach" to help reduce the amount of the medication absorbed into the bloodstream. It is unknown whether dialysis is useful for removing Zolinza from the body.
Treatment will also involve supportive care, which consists of treating the symptoms that occur as a result of the overdose. For instance, supportive treatment for a Zolinza overdose may include:
  • Close monitoring of blood cell counts, blood pressure, heart rate, blood sugar, and electrolytes (such as potassium and magnesium levels)
  • Intravenous (IV) fluids
  • Certain medications or a blood transfusion to treat dangerously low platelets or bleeding.
It is important that you seek medical attention immediately if you believe that you or someone else may have taken too much Zolinza.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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