Temozolomide (Oral)

Temozolomide (By Mouth)

Temozolomide (te-moe-ZOE-loe-mide)

Treats brain tumors.

Brand Name(s):

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not take this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to temozolomide or dacarbazine.

How to Use This Medicine:


  • This medicine, like all medicines used to treat cancer, is very strong. Make sure you understand why you are getting it and what the risks and benefits of treatment are. It is important for you to work closely with your doctor.  
  • Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often you should take it. Make sure you understand your doctor’s instructions.  
  • Your pharmacist will package the medicine in separate vials or packets, one for each day you will take the medicine. Each vial or packet may contain capsules that are different sizes or colors.  
  • Swallow the capsules whole with a glass of water. Do not split, open, or chew the capsules.  
  • If capsules are accidentally opened or damaged, be careful not to breathe in any of the medicine or get it on your skin. If you get it on your skin, wash it right away with soap and water. Call your caregiver right away.  
  • Take the medicine on an empty stomach. Your doctor may tell you to take the medicine at bedtime.  
  • If you vomit right after you take the medicine, call your doctor.

If a dose is missed::

  • Call your doctor for instructions if you miss a dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store the medicine at room temperature, away from heat and moisture.  
  • Keep the medicine out of the reach of children.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Talk to your doctor before getting any vaccines (such as flu shots).

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Do not breastfeed while you are getting this medicine.  
  • Do not get pregnant while you are taking temozolomide. Use an effective form of birth control while you are being treated with this medicine.  
  • You may get infections more easily while you are taking temozolomide. Stay away from crowds or people with colds, flu, or other infections.  
  • This medicine can cause nausea and vomiting. Your doctor may prescribe medicine to keep you from feeling sick and throwing up. If the medicine does not help (you can’t keep liquids down), call your doctor.  
  • Your doctor may want to check your blood while you are using this medicine. Make sure you keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Fever, chills, sore throat  
  • Severe nausea and/or vomiting  
  • Sores or ulcers in the mouth  
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising  
  • Unusual weakness or tiredness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Headache  
  • Mild nausea, constipation or diarrhea  
  • Tiredness

Johns Hopkins patient information

Copyright 1996-2014 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 16.02.
Revision date: July 4, 2011
Last revised: by Dave R. Roger, M.D.

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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.

The drug reference included in this section is provided by Cerner Multum, Inc., of Denver, Colorado. Armenian Medical Network receives monthly updates from Multum.