Sutent vs. Afinitor

Reviewed on 8/3/2020

Are Sutent and Afinitor the Same Thing?

Sutent (sunitinib malate) and Afinitor (everolimus) are antineoplastic agents (cancer medications) used to treat advanced kidney cancer.

Sutent is also used to treat gastrointestinal stromal tumor after disease progression on, or intolerance to imatinib mesylate, and for progressive, well-differentiated pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors in patients with unresectable, locally advanced or metastatic disease.

Afinitor is usually given after sorafenib (Nexavar) or sunitinib (Sutent) have been tried without successful treatment of symptoms.

Side effects of Sutent and Afinitor that are similar include changes in taste or unusual or unpleasant taste in the mouth, nausea, vomiting, constipation, dry skin, hair loss, diarrhea, mouth or throat pain/sores, rash or other skin changes such as dry or cracked skin, loss of appetite, and pain or swelling in the arms or legs.

Side effects of Sutent that are different from Afinitor include cough, upset stomach, changes in skin or hair color (yellow skin or lighter skin/hair), joint pain, back pain, fatigue, tiredness, weakness, fever, abdominal pain, blisters or rash on hands or feet, numbness or tingling of the arms or legs, shortness of breath, bleeding, watery eyes, swelling around the eyes, chest pain, general ill feeling, and uneven heart rate.

Side effects of Afinitor that are different from Sutent include weight loss, nosebleeds, acne, itching, headache, and cold symptoms (stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat).

Both Sutent and Afinitor may interact with dexamethasone, imatinib, isoniazid, St. John's wort, antibiotics, barbiturates, heart or blood pressure medications, HIV/AIDS medicines, medicines to treat narcolepsy, and seizure medications.

Sutent may also interact with nefazodone, antifungals, medications to treat osteoporosis or Paget's disease of bone, and grapefruit and grapefruit juice.

Afinitor may also interact with aminoglutethimide, aprepitant, bosentan, conivaptan, diclofenac, enoxacin, phenylbutazone, and antidepressants.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Sutent?

Common side effects of Sutent include:

Side effects of Sutent include:

  • unusual or unpleasant taste in the mouth
  • cough
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • upset stomach
  • constipation
  • dry skin
  • changes in skin or hair color (yellow skin or lighter skin/hair)
  • hair loss
  • joint pain
  • back pain
  • fatigue
  • tiredness
  • weakness
  • fever
  • diarrhea
  • mouth pain/sores
  • abdominal pain
  • rash or other skin changes such as dry or cracked skin
  • blisters or rash on hands or feet
  • loss of appetite
  • pain or swelling in the arms or legs
  • numbness or tingling of the arms or legs
  • shortness of breath
  • bleeding
  • watery eyes
  • swelling around the eyes
  • chest pain
  • general ill feeling, or
  • uneven heart rate.

Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects of Sutent including:

  • headache,
  • easy bruising or bleeding,
  • swelling ankles or feet,
  • unusual weight changes,
  • cold or heat intolerance,
  • unusual tiredness,
  • black or bloody stools,
  • vomit that looks like coffee grounds,
  • coughing up blood,
  • slow wound healing,
  • jaw pain,
  • toe/joint/back pain,
  • painful urination,
  • cloudy/pink/bloody urine,
  • changes in the amount of urine,
  • muscle weakness/cramping/twitching,
  • signs of low blood sugar (such as hunger, shakiness, fast heartbeat, sweating),
  • mental/mood changes (such as decreased alertness, irritability, nervousness), or
  • vision changes (such as decreased vision).

What Are Possible Side Effects of Afinitor?

Common side effects of Afinitor include:

  • diarrhea,
  • constipation,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • decreased appetite,
  • weight loss,
  • changes in taste or unusual taste in your mouth,
  • nosebleeds,
  • dry skin,
  • acne,
  • itching or skin rash,
  • headache,
  • pain or sores in the mouth and throat,
  • cold symptoms (stuffy nose, sneezing, sore throat),
  • temporary hair loss, or
  • pain in your arms and legs.

Tell your doctor if you have serious side effects of Afinitor including:

  • swelling hands/ankles/feet,
  • missed/heavy/painful periods,
  • easy bruising or bleeding,
  • unusual tiredness,
  • mental/mood changes, or
  • wound problems (such as slowed wound healing).

What Is Sutent?

Sutent (sunitinib malate) is a multi-kinase inhibitor indicated for the treatment of gastrointestinal stromal tumor after disease progression on, or intolerance to imatinib mesylate, for advanced renal cell carcinoma, and for progressive, well-differentiated pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors in patients with unresectable, locally advanced or metastatic disease. Sutent is available in generic form.

What Is Afinitor?

Afinitor (everolimus) is an antineoplastic agent (cancer medication) used to treat advanced kidney cancer, and is usually given after sorafenib (Nexavar) or sunitinib (Sutent) have been tried without successful treatment of symptoms.

What Drugs Interact With Sutent?

Sutent may interact with dexamethasone, imatinib, isoniazid, nefazodone, St. John's wort, antibiotics, antifungals, barbiturates, heart or blood pressure medications, HIV/AIDS medicines, medicines to treat narcolepsy, medications to treat osteoporosis or Paget's disease of bone, seizure medications, or grapefruit and grapefruit juice. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use.

What Drugs Interact With Afinitor?

Afinitor may interact with aminoglutethimide, aprepitant, bosentan, conivaptan, dexamethasone, diclofenac, enoxacin, imatinib, isoniazid, phenylbutazone, St. John's wort, antidepressants, antibiotics, barbiturates, heart or blood pressure medications, HIV or AIDS medications, medicines to treat narcolepsy, or seizure medications. Tell your doctor all medications you use.

How Should Sutent be Taken?

The recommended dose of Sutent (strengths available are 12.5, 25 and 50mg tablets). Sutent may be taken without food. Dose modification depends on the type of cancer treated and is determined by the treating doctor. Severe side effects include hepatotoxicity.

How Should Afinitor be Taken?

The recommended dose of Afinitor is 10 mg, taken once daily.

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References
Pfizer. Sutent Product Information

https://www.sutent.com

Novartis. Afinitor Product Information.

https://www.us.afinitor.com/

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