NZ Formulary

Bicalutamide

bye-kah-loo-tah-mide

What does it do?

Bicalutamide blocks the effects of testosterone (a male sex hormone) in the body. It is used to treat prostate cancer.

How should you take it?

Take bicalutamide regularly as directed with a glass of water.

What if you forget a dose?

If it is nearly time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the usual time. Otherwise, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Do not take two doses at the same time.

Can you take other medicines?

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products or recreational drugs.

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Symptoms of liver problems including: yellow skin or eyes, itching, dark urine, pale bowel motions, abdominal pain

Short of breath, persistent dry cough

Tell your doctor immediately

Sore or enlarged breasts

Hot flushing, sweating, more sensitive to sunlight (sunburn or rash)

Less interest in sex, trouble getting or keeping an erection

Less body and facial hair

Tiredness or weakness

Stomach upset

Tell your doctor if troublesome

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Important information continues on next page.

Other information:

  • Tell your doctor if you have liver problems.
  • You will need regular blood tests while taking bicalutamide to check if it is causing problems with your liver.
  • Protect yourself from too much sunlight while being treated with bicalutamide. Always cover up and apply a thick layer of broad spectrum sunscreen (at least SPF 30) when outside. Do not use sunbeds.