What is this medication?

DUTASTERIDE (doo TAS teer ide) treats the symptoms of an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia). It works by decreasing the size of the prostate. It belongs to a group of medications called 5-alpha reductase inhibitors.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Avodart

What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • Liver disease
  • Prostate cancer
  • An unusual or allergic reaction to dutasteride, finasteride, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • Breast-feeding

How should I use this medication?

Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Do not cut, crush, chew or open this medication. You can take this medication with or without food. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medication more often than directed. Do not stop taking except on your care team's advice.

Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medication?

  • Antiviral medications for HIV or AIDS
  • Boceprevir
  • Certain medications for fungal infections like ketoconazole, itraconazole, voriconazole
  • Certain medications for infection like erythromycin, telithromycin
  • Cimetidine
  • Diltiazem
  • Saw palmetto or other dietary supplements
  • Verapamil

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.

What should I watch for while using this medication?

Do not donate blood while you are taking this medication. This will prevent giving this medication to a pregnant female through a blood transfusion. Ask your care team when it is safe to donate blood after you stop taking this medication.

Contact your care team if your symptoms do not start to get better. You may need to take this medication for 6 to 12 months to get the best results.

Women who are pregnant or may get pregnant must not handle this medication. The active ingredient could harm the unborn baby. If a pregnant woman or woman who may become pregnant comes into contact with a leaking capsule, she should wash the exposed area of skin with soap and water immediately and check with her care team.

This medication can interfere with PSA laboratory tests for prostate cancer. If you are scheduled to have a lab test for prostate cancer, tell your care team that you are taking this medication.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?

Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:

  • Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Breast tissue changes, new lumps, redness, pain, or discharge from the nipple

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):

  • Breast pain or tenderness
  • Change in sex drive or performance

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medication?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medication after the expiration date.

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

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