About buserelin for men
|Type of medicine||Gonadorelin analogue|
|Used for||Prostate cancer|
|Available as||Injection and nasal spray|
Although in many cases prostate cancer is slow-growing, in some men it can be more aggressive and spread to other parts of the body. When this happens, it may benefit from a hormone treatment such as buserelin, which slows the progress of the cancer.
Prostate cancer cells need the male hormone testosterone to grow. Buserelin works by reducing the production of testosterone, and this helps to stop the growth of the cancer cells.
Buserelin is also used in some disorders which affect women. There is a separate leaflet called Buserelin for women which gives more information about this.
Before using buserelin
Some medicines are not suitable for people with certain conditions, and sometimes a medicine may only be used if extra care is taken. For these reasons, before you start taking buserelin it is important that your doctor or pharmacist knows:
- If you have low moods or are depressed.
- If you have high blood pressure.
- If you have diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes).
- If you have a bone disease such as osteoporosis.
- If you are taking or using any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
- If you have ever had an allergic reaction to a medicine.
How to use buserelin
- Before you start this treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet from inside your pack. The leaflet will give you more information about buserelin, and a full list of side-effects which you may experience.
- When you start buserelin, you will be given injections every eight hours for the first seven days. For convenience, these injections are likely to be given to you while you are in hospital. On the next day, you will be given a nasal spray to use. You must follow the instructions given to you by your doctor for using the spray, but it is usually recommended that you use one spray into each nostril six times each day as follows:
- 1st dose before your breakfast.
- 2nd dose after your breakfast.
- 3rd dose before your midday meal.
- 4th dose after your midday meal.
- 5th dose before your evening meal.
- 6th dose after your evening meal.
- Each time you open a new bottle, you will need to attach the nebuliser to the bottle of solution, and then ‘prime’ the spray. You do this by pumping the spray about six or seven times until you see a fine spray produced. Priming fills the nebuliser and tests that the spray is working correctly.
- It is important you use this medicine regularly and space the doses out evenly through the day. If you forget a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose when it is due. Do not take two doses together to make up for a forgotten dose.
- About 1 in 10 men notice that their symptoms (usually pain) become worse for a short while when they first start treatment with buserelin. Your doctor may give you some tablets to take during the first few weeks to help prevent this. If you do experience any increase in pain, this will settle again after a couple of weeks.
- Keep your appointments with your doctor so that your progress can be monitored. Your doctor will want you to have regular blood tests to check your hormone levels.
- Even if you get a cold or your nose feels blocked, you should continue to use the spray as it will still work. If you are using any other nasal sprays (such as decongestants), you should use buserelin spray first, then wait at least 30 minutes after using buserelin before using the other sprays.
- Buserelin may affect your blood sugar levels. If you have diabetes you may need to check your blood glucose more frequently. Your doctor will be able to advise you about this.
Can buserelin cause problems?
Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. These usually improve as your body adjusts to the new medicine, but speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following side-effects continue or become troublesome.
|Common buserelin side-effects - these affect less than 1 in 10 people who take this medicine||What can I do if I experience this?|
|Feeling dizzy, tired, or sleepy||If this happens, do not drive or use tools or machines|
|Feeling or being sick, stomach or abdominal pain||Stick to simple foods - avoid rich or spicy meals|
|Diarrhoea||Drink plenty of water to replace lost fluids|
|Constipation||Eat a well-balanced diet and drink several glasses of water each day|
|Headache, muscle pain and stiffness||Ask your pharmacist to recommend a suitable painkiller|
|Irritation of your nose, nosebleeds, changes in the
way things smell and taste, changes in your weight,
feeling nervous or emotional, disturbed sleep,
being aware of a fast heartbeat, dry skin,
acne, changes in the thickness of your hair
|If any of these become troublesome, speak with your doctor|
Important: if you get a skin rash or redness, or have any difficulties breathing, you should contact your doctor for advice straightaway. These are rare but possibly serious symptoms, as they may be signs of an allergic reaction.
If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to this medicine, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
How to store buserelin
- Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
- Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.
- Each bottle contains enough for one week of treatment. Even if there is any solution left after this time, do not use it. Instead, open a fresh bottle.
Important information about all medicines
Further reading & references
- British National Formulary; 63rd Edition (Mar 2012) British Medical Association and Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain, London
- Manufacturer’s PIL, Suprefact® Nasal Spray; sanofi-aventis, The electronic Medicines Compendium. Dated June 2011.
|Original Author: Helen Allen||Current Version: Helen Allen||Peer Reviewer: Dr Adrian Bonsall|
|Last Checked: 13/08/2012||Document ID: 13931 Version: 1||© EMIS|
Disclaimer: This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. EMIS has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. For details see our conditions.