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Sunitinib Side Effects

If you are using sunitinib, it is important to be aware of potentially serious complications this medication may cause. Contact your healthcare provider right away if you develop serious sunitinib side effects, such as an unexplained rash, dark urine, or changes in your vision or speech. Some of the more common problems reported with this chemotherapy drug include nausea, fatigue, and diarrhea.

An Introduction to Sunitinib Side Effects

Just like any cancer medicine, sunitinib (SUTENT®) can cause side effects, some of which can be significant. Although not everyone who takes the medication will have problems, most people will experience some type of adverse reaction during sunitinib treatment. Talk to your healthcare provider about ways you can manage some of the more bothersome side effects.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with sunitinib. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)

Serious Side Effects of Sunitinib

Some sunitinib side effects are potentially serious and should be reported to your healthcare provider right away. These include but are not limited to:
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, such as:
    • An unexplained rash
    • Hives
    • Itching
    • Unexplained swelling, especially of the mouth, lips, or throat
    • Wheezing or difficulty breathing
    • Difficulty swallowing
  • Signs of infection, such as:
  • Signs of liver problems, such as:
    • Yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes (jaundice)
    • Dark urine
    • Tiredness or fatigue
    • Pain in the right upper part of the stomach
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • An irregular or fast heartbeat
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Vision or speech changes, weakness or numbness on one side of the body, or a severe headache
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising
  • Wounds that do not heal or appear infected
  • Black, tarry, or bloody stools
  • Vomiting blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds
  • New or worsening stomach pain or swelling
  • Swelling in your hands, legs, ankles, or feet
  • Changes in mood, such as depression or anxiety
  • Severe diarrhea or diarrhea that does not go away (see Chemotherapy-Induced Diarrhea).
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Sunitinib Drug Information

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