Erleada (generic name Apalutamide) is a medication used to treat prostate cancer. It falls under the category of anti-androgens that block testosterone, slowing the cancer’s growth.

Precautions and Warnings of Erleada

You should always talk to your doctor if you have any allergies since Erleada can contain inactive ingredients that could trigger allergic reactions. Discuss your medical history with your doctor, especially if you have experience with heart problems, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, or seizures.

In rare instances, Erleada can cause seizures. Your doctor may recommend avoiding activities where a sudden loss of consciousness could injure you or others.

Erleada can increase the risk of falls in older adults. It would be best if you did not donate sperm when taking Erleada for a minimum of three months after stopping treatment. Men who have sex with a pregnant woman must wear condoms while taking this medication.

Erleada Side Effects 

Erleada can often cause a mild rash that is usually not an issue for most people. However, it could mimic a rare rash, indicating a severe infection. To be safe, get immediate medical help if you develop a rash.

Other potential side effects besides the ones mentioned below can occur when taking Erleada. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details, and contact them if you notice possibly atypical side effects while taking the medication.

Common Side Effects

Common side effects of Erleada include:

  • Joint pain
  • Nausea
  • Decreased appetite
  • Weight loss
  • High blood pressure
  • Hot flashes
  • Diarrhea
  • Fractures

Rare Side Effects

Tell your doctor immediately if you experience severe side effects, including constipation, unusual weight gain, or a slow heartbeat, as all can be signs of an underactive thyroid.

This medication may make muscles and bones weaker, increasing the risk of breaking bones and injuring yourself in a fall.

Severe Side Effects

Seek immediate medical attention if you experience:

  • Heart attack symptoms (shortness of breath, left arm/chest/jaw pain, excessive sweating)
  • Seizures
  • Stroke symptoms (difficulty speaking, confusion, sudden change in vision)

Drug Interactions With Erleada

This is by no means an exhaustive list; talk with a medical professional about potential drug interactions. Do not stop or change the dosages of medications without talking to your doctor first.

Erleada can affect the efficacy of some medications by speeding up their processing and removal in the body. Some of the affected drugs include:

Strengths and Dosages of Erleada

Erleada is typically taken as a 240 mg treatment once daily. Your doctor will either prescribe one 240-mg tablet or four 60-mg tablets.

Cost of Erleada in America

A supply of 120 60-mg tablets of Erleada costs roughly $15,500. This price refers to patients paying cash and does not reflect the medication cost that an insurance plan could cover.

Why is Erleada so Expensive?

Erleada is a brand-name drug that automatically increases the price of any medication. Cancer medications generally have a higher cost than many other medications as well. However, there are ways to lower Erleada’s cost. Not only that, but you may find this medication significantly less expensive depending on your insurance plan. Help is also available if you need financial support to help pay for Erleada.

Alternatives to Erleada

Yes, there are alternatives to Erleada. Some of these medications have a lower-cost generic available. Talk to your doctor about alternatives and see if they’re right for you, particularly if you want to lower the cost of your prostate cancer medication.

Some alternatives include:

FAQs of Erleada

How long do you have to take Erleada?

The length of treatment with Erleada varies, but it is usually taken until the cancer passes a certain point or the side effects become too challenging to deal with. In clinic trials, many patients were still taking the medication after 36 to 48 months.

What should I do if I miss a dose of Erleada?

Take your usual dose as soon as you can when you remember. Do not take extra tablets if you miss a dose entirely, and return to your regular medication schedule the next day.

When was Erleada approved?

The U.S. Food and Administration (FDA) approval for Erleada came in February 2018.

How should I store Erleada?

Store this medication at room temperature, between 68 and 77 F. Keep Erleada in its original packaging to protect it from moisture and light. While this bottle is child-resistant, it’s wise to keep Erleada out of reach of children.

How long can you take Erleada?

You should take Erleada as long as your doctor continues to prescribe it. Typically, treatment of prostate cancer with Erleada is ongoing until the patient opts to stop treatment or until the disease passes a certain point.

What is the normal time of treatment for Erleada?

Erleada is meant to be taken long-term. Most people take this medication until their condition worsens, so there isn’t a set time for Erleada treatments. Your doctor will monitor how your body responds to the medication and how your condition is progressing and respond accordingly.

Is there a generic available for Erleada?

You can only purchase Erleada as a brand-name drug. With no generic alternative, there are few options for those who are prescribed this medication and are looking for a less expensive medication.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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