HOW DO ANTINEOPLASTIC RETINOIDS WORK?
Antineoplastic retinoids are a class of drugs used to treat skin manifestations of cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (a type of skin cancer), skin lesions in patients with AIDS-related Kaposi's sarcoma (cancer that develops from the cells that line the lymph or blood vessels).
Antineoplastic retinoids are derivatives of vitamin A used orally or topically for the treatment of skin manifestations of certain cancers. They selectively bind to and activate retinoid X receptors which regulate cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis (death of cells that occurs as a normal and controlled part of an organism's growth or development). Once activated, these receptors function as transcription factors that regulate the expression of genes that control cellular differentiation and proliferation. They also possess antiangiogenic (the ability to reduce unwanted growth of blood vessels) activity and inhibit cancer metastasis.
HOW ARE ANTINEOPLASTIC RETINOIDS USED?
Antineoplastic retinoids are used to treat conditions such as:
- AIDS-related Kaposi's sarcoma (cancer that develops from the cells that line the lymph or blood vessels)
- Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma (a type of skin cancer)
- Refractory mycosis fungoides/Sezary syndrome (a rare form of T-cell lymphoma of the skin)
- Acute promyelocytic leukemia (an aggressive type of acute myeloid leukemia where there is accumulation of immature blood-forming cells [promyelocytes] in the blood and bone marrow)
WHAT ARE SIDE EFFECTS OF ANTINEOPLASTIC RETINOIDS?
Some of the common side effects include:
- Dry skin
- Abdominal pain
- Loss of appetite
- Joint/muscle pain
- Redness, rash, pain, burning, itching, stinging, or tingling at the application site
Other rare side effects include:
- Hair loss
- Unusual weight gain
- Chills, sore throat, fever, or cough
- Paresthesia (an abnormal sensation, typically tingling or pricking caused chiefly by pressure on or damage to peripheral nerves)
- Elevated liver enzymes
- Peripheral neuropathy (damage to one or more groups of nerves)
- Peripheral edema (swelling of lower legs or hands)
- Exfoliative dermatitis (a severe skin condition that causes extreme shedding of the top layers of the skin)
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
Information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible side effects, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. Check with your doctor or pharmacist to make sure these drugs do not cause any harm when you take them along with other medicines. Never stop taking your medication and never change your dose or frequency without consulting your doctor.