Leuprolide Acetate (Generic Name)

Other Names: Eligard®, Lupron®,

About This Drug

Leuprolide acetate is a drug that affects the production of certain hormones in your body. It is used to treat cancer and other medical conditions. This drug is given by subcutaneous injection (SQ) or intramuscular injection (IM).

Possible Side Effects ( More Common)

  • Feeling flushed (“hot flashes”). This is usually temporary.
  • Unusual sweating
  • Bone pain
  • Weakness. This is usually temporary.
  • Numbness, tingling, or decreased sensation in legs, feet, or toes. This is usually temporary.
  • Headache
  • Breast tenderness
  • Nausea
  • Soreness at the injection sites

Possible Side Effects ( Less Common)

  • Swelling of hands, ankles, or feet
  • Dizziness
  • Difficult or painful urination (rare)
  • Breast enlargement in men (rare)

Treating Side Effects

Ask your doctor or nurse about medication that is available to help prevent or lessen bone pain, headache, soreness at the injection sites and nausea.

Food and Drug Interactions

There are no known interactions of leuprolide acetate with food.This drug may interact with other medication. Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the medication and dietary supplements (vitamins, minerals, herbs and others) that you are currently taking. The safety and effectiveness of dietary supplements and alternative diets are often unknown. Using these might unexpectedly affect your cancer or interfere with your treatment. Until more is known, you should not use dietary supplements or alternative diets without your cancer doctor's advice.

When to Call the Doctor

Call your doctor or nurse as soon as possible if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Dizziness
  • Swelling of hands, ankles, or feet
  • Bone pain, headache or  nausea unrelieved by prescribed medication
  • Numbness, tingling, or decreased sensation in fingers and toes
  • Difficulty in walking or changes in the way you walk
  • Clumsiness in buttoning clothes, opening jars, or other routine hand activities
  • Painful or difficult urination
  • Uncomfortable hot flashes or recurrent sweats
  • Weakness that prevents you from doing your usual activities
  • Breast tenderness that is bothersome

Sexual and Reproduction Concerns

  • Pregnancy warning: In women, menstrual bleeding will stop while you are receiving this drug. Do not assume that you cannot become pregnant if you do not have a menstrual period. This drug may have harmful effects on the unborn child, so effective methods of birth control should be used during your cancer treatment.
  • Genetic counseling is available to you to discuss the effects of this drug therapy on future pregnancies. In addition, a genetic counselor can review the potential risks of problems in the fetus due to this medication if an exposure during pregnancy has occurred.
  • Breast feeding warning: It is not known if this drug passes into breast milk.  For this reason, women are advised to discuss with their doctor the risks and benefits of breast feeding during treatment with this drug because this drug may enter the breast milk and seriously harm a breast feeding infant.
  • In men, a rare side effect is impotence or erectile dysfunction, which means he is not able to have a sexual erection or maintain it like he was before taking this drug. Speak with your doctor if this occurs.

Revised June 2013

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