How does this medicine work?

Doxorubicin (doks-oh-roo-bi-sin) is a chemotherapy medicine that destroys cancer cells in all phases of cell life.

How is the medicine given?

Doxorubicin is given into a vein (IV) in the hospital or clinic.

What are the side effects?


  • low blood cell counts Common
  • moderate nausea,


  • hair loss
  • red- or orange-colored urine for up to 48 hours after infusion


  • mouth sores
  • may “reactivate” redness in an area of previous radiation
  • darkening of nail beds and skin folds


  • cardiac muscle damage with prolonged use
  • secondary cancer

Tissue burn may occur if the medicine leaks from the vein.

It is important to take good care of the mouth to prevent mouth sores.

When should I call the clinic?

Call hematology helpline 982403210 if:

  • fever, chills
  • cough
  • hoarseness
  • bleeding, unusual bruising
  • mouth sores
  • continued vomiting
  • continued diarrhea
  • skin irritation
  • sunburn
  • irregular heartbeat
  • signs of allergic reaction:
    • sudden rash or hives
    • itching
    • wheezing
    • trouble breathing – call 112

What else do I need to know?

All caregivers should wear gloves when handling urine, stool, and vomit while your child is receiving the chemotherapy and for 48 hours afterward. Urine, stool, and vomit can be safely disposed of in septic tanks and the sewer system.

Any clothing or bed linens that are contaminated with urine, stool, or vomit should be washed separately from other laundry in hot water and detergent. Anyone handling the contaminated laundry should wear gloves.

Blood samples will be drawn to check the effects of the doxorubicin. Blood counts are lowest 10 to 14 days after the medicine is given.

Risk of heart damage increases when total lifetime doses are high. Echocardiograms are done to look for early signs of problems during treatment and off treatment.

To prevent sunburn, wear sunscreen and protective clothing when outdoors. All patients should wear sunscreen during treatment and for 1 year after treatment is completed. Avoid extensive exposure to sunlight.

You and your child should know the names of all the medicines he or she is taking. It is important to share this information with anyone involved in your child’s care.


This sheet is not specific to your child but provides general information. If you have any questions, please call:

Hematology Clinic 3rd floor, Kedar
Opp.Krupa Petrol Pump, Parimal Garden, Ambawadi Clinic: 07926463219
Whattsapp: 8238065890