Avastin is a prescription drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat lung, colorectal, breast, and several other cancers. Avastin is sometimes prescribed off-label to treat ovarian cancer. Avastin is also referred to by its drug name, bevacizumab.
Avastin is a member of a class of drugs called monoclonal antibodies. Avastin is believed to work by targeting vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), an essential growth factor for the cells that line blood vessels. By inhibiting VEGF, Avastin blocks the growth of blood vessels that supply cancer cells, thus slowing the growth of tumors.
How do I take it?
Prescribing information states that Avastin is given as an intravenous (into your vein) injection by a health care professional. Avastin is usually given in a health clinic or doctor’s office once every two or three weeks. It should be taken exactly as prescribed by the physician.
The FDA-approved label for Avastin lists common side effects including headache, high blood pressure, runny nose, nose bleeds, protein in the urine, dry skin, back pain, and changes in taste sensation.
Rare but serious side effects listed for Avastin include blood clotting, high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, ovarian failure, and infusion reactions.
For more details about this treatment, visit:
Highlights of Prescribing Information — U.S. Food and Drug Administration
Avastin — Genentech
Avastin — Chemocare