Vinblastine is used in combination with other drugs and chemotherapy in the treatment of Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, testicular cancer and, in some cases, bladder cancer, certain types of lung cancers, Kaposi's sarcoma and some brain cancers. It is also used to treat histiocytosis Langerhans cells.


What is Vinblastine?


Vinblastine belongs to the class of vinca alkaloids, drugs that block the division of cells. Its action appears to be associated with the ability to prevent the formation of the structures (microtubules) that allow the DNA to replicate and be distributed between the two cells resulting from cell division. By acting in this way, Vinblastine slows or stops the proliferation of tumor cells.


How should Vinblastine be taken?


Vinblastine is administered intravenously, typically once a week. The duration of treatment varies depending on what other medications you take, the body's response to therapy, as well as the type of cancer.


Side effects associated with Vinblastine


Among the possible adverse effects of vinblastine include:


  • Constipation
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Appetite or weight loss
  • Stomach ache
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Pain in the jaw, bones or other body parts
  • Hair loss


It is important to contact your doctor immediately if taking Vinblastine triggers any of the following symptoms:


  • Fever, sore throat, chills or other symptoms of infection
  • Bruising or bleeding
  • Sores in the mouth
  • Fatigue or unusual weakness
  • Pain, numbness, burning or tingling in the hands or feet
  • Difficulty walking
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Hearing loss
  • Convulsions
  • Chest pains


Contraindications and warnings associated with the use of Vinblastine


Vinblastine can interfere with the menstrual cycle and stop (sometimes permanently) the production of sperm.


Moreover, before treatment it is important to inform your doctor if:


  • You have any allergy to the active substance, its excipients or other drugs
  • You are taking other medications, herbal remedies and supplements, remembering to mention aprepitant, antifungals, clarithromycin, erythromycin, HIV drugs, phenytoin and tolterodine
  • You are suffering from infections
  • You suffer (or have suffered) from cardiovascular (including varicose veins), lung or liver diseases
  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding