Zelboraf (vemurafenib) Side Effects

I was originally diagnosed stage 3c metastatic melanoma in March 2010. I’m currently stage 4, being treated at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. I am BRAF V600D positive and started Zelboraf (Vemurafenib) a BRAF Inhibitor in April 2012. I was off and on it for a year. This is by no means a complete list and often times I’ve had to consult with my oncology nurse to escalate to a prescription solution. Many people cannot tolerate the full strength dosage of the drug due to its severe side effects and like I did, take 720 mg (3 pills) twice a day. Many people find the side effects lessen over time and come and go.

Sun Sensitivity LIMIT SUN EXPOSURE, High SPF clothing, & hat, High SPF sunscreen & lip balm, Sunglasses
Joint Pain Ibuprofen or Aleve, Exercise
Foot Pain Thick cushioning socks and shoes, Ice Packs
Build up of calluses – soles of the feet Soak feet in warm water and file down dry calluses daily or as needed then seal the raw area with a Liquid Bandage product like New Skin.  This keeps the calluses from building up as quickly and protects the raw areas resulting in less pain. I found this worked MUCH better than even Rx creams. Remove bandage product and re-apply daily.
Warts, skin tags, etc. See a dermatologist frequently
Nausea Drink lots of fluids, Smaller more frequent meals, Chew gum, Use mints
Persistent Bad Taste in the mouth Chew gum, Use mints
Fatigue, tiredness Exercise
Chills/Fever Ibuprofen or Aleve
Diarrhea/ Loose stools Immodium
Excess Gas 1/2 Tab Immodium, Phazyme
Rough, Dry Skin Vaseline on face – it was extra dry, Curel Intensive Healing Cream,  Coconut Oil, Drink Extra Fluids
Mild, Itchy Rash Benadryl, DermaSerra, Lukewarm Oatmeal Bath, Cool packs, Avoid the heat and hot showers
Itchy Scalp Use a good moisturizing conditioner and leave it on 3-5 minutes before rinsing
Hair Loss Washing less frequently may slow it down, Use a dry shampoo, American Cancer Society – free wigs
Headache Ibuprofen or Aleve
Tinnitus See an audiologist for hearing check and ways to deal with tinnitus
Painful Dry Eyes Blink eye drops, Genteal Eye Gel, Genteal Eye Ointment
Bleeding Gums Warm salt water rinse 3x day + Healthy Gums Mouthwash 2x a day
Dry Bleeding Cracked Lips Burt’s Bees Ultra Moisturizing Lip Treatment, Vaseline
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