Medication Information Leaflet

What is this medication for?

Alpelisib is used to treat breast cancer. The medication works by blocking the signals that cause cancer cells to multiply.

How should I take/use this medication?

This medication should be taken once a day, at the same time of the day. You can take this medication with or immediately after food. Swallow the tablets whole. Do not chew, break, or crush the tablets.

Do not stop taking your medication without checking with your healthcare professional.

If possible, handle the medication yourself. If a family member or caregiver needs to give the medication, do wash their hands before and after handling the medication.

What should I do if I forget to take/use this medication?

If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember if it is less than 9 hours from your regular scheduled dose. If it has been more than 9 hours, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the usual time. Do not take two doses to make up for the missed dose.

What precautions should I take?

Inform your healthcare professional if:

  • You are allergic to this medication or any of the other ingredients of this medication
  • You or your partner is pregnant or planning to become pregnant
    • You should use effective birth control during treatment and for at least 1 week after stopping Alpelisib
  • You are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed
    • Do not breastfeed during treatment and for at least 1 week after stopping Alpelisib
  • You have high blood sugar
  • You have a history of severe skin conditions
  • You are taking any other medications, including supplements, traditional medications, herbal remedies.

What are some common side-effects of this medication?

  • Loose and frequent stools (diarrhoea)
    • Reduce consumption of foods high in fibre such as raw fruits and vegetables which cause softer and more frequent stools
    • Have foods such as porridge or soups which are gentler on the stomach
    • Ensure you are drinking sufficient fluid (at least 2 litres or 8 cups of water or fluids a day)
    • Avoid spicy and/or fried food
    • Avoid alcohol
    • Avoid coffee, tea, milk and dairy products.
    • Take antidiarrheal medicine as instructed to manage your diarrhoea. Inform your doctor if the antidiarrhoeal medicine does not help with your diarrhoea.
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
    • Take small and frequent meals, rather than 3 large meals
    • Consume food that are cold or at room temperature to avoid becoming nauseated from the smell
  • Decreased appetite
  • Mouth sores
    • Practice good oral hygiene. Use a soft-bristle toothbrush.
    • Gargle mouth with salt water after each meal. Avoid mouthwashes that contain alcohol
  • Feeling tired
    • Take short naps or rest breaks throughout the day
    • Doing simple exercises such as walking can help to boost your energy
  • Rash
    • Use mild soap and unscented detergent.
    • Avoid hot showers. Use cool or lukewarm water.
    • Avoid too much exposure to the sun. Use sunscreen or long sleeves and pants when going out under the sun.
    • Inform your doctor if the rash is worsens
  • Temporary decrease in blood cell counts
    • This may put you at higher risk of infections, bleeding or bruising and feeling tired
    • Reduce your risk of getting an infection by:
      • Maintaining good hand hygiene. Wash your hands often during the day especially before you eat or after using the toilet.
      • Avoid crowds and do not go near people who are sick. Wear a mask if necessary.
      • Eating freshly cooked food. Avoid raw meats, vegetables, eggs, half-cooked or uncooked food
    • Brush teeth gently with a soft bristle toothbrush to prevent gum bleeding
    • Be careful when handling sharp objects such as scissors or knives
  • Increase in blood sugar levels
    • Your doctor will monitor your blood sugar levels before you start Alpelisib and during the treatment. You may be required to test your blood sugar more frequently at the start of treatment.

What are some rare but serious side-effects that I need to seek medical advice immediately?

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following:

  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Itchy skin rashes over your whole body

Other serious side effects include:

  • Flushing, fever, fast heartbeat
  • Severe skin reactions such as red, blistering or peeling of the skin
  • Severe abdominal pain or blood in your stool
  • New or worsening symptoms of lung problems, including difficulty in breathing, cough or chest pain
  • Symptoms of high blood sugar, which may include one or more of the following:
    • Excessive thirst
    • Increased appetite with weight loss
    • Urinating more frequently than usual or higher amounts of urine than usual
    • Confusion
    • Fruity breath

If you experience any of these symptoms, you should stop your medication and see your healthcare professional immediately.

What food or medication should I avoid when I take this medication?

Not applicable

How should I store this medication?

Store in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight. Store in the original package to protect from moisture. Keep Alpelisib tablets away from children.

How should I throw away this medication safely?

Pack the medication into a bag and bring it back to the pharmacy where you received the medication from.


Please take note that the above is not a complete list of all possible side effects. If you have any concerns about your medication or if you have other side effects that you think are caused by this medication, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

If you take more than the recommended dose, please seek medical advice immediately. The information provided on this page does not replace information from your healthcare professional. Please consult your healthcare professional for more information.

This article is jointly developed by members of the National Medication Information workgroup. The workgroup consists of cluster partners (National Healthcare Group, National University Health System and SingHealth), community pharmacies (Guardian, Unity and Watsons) and Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore. The content does not reflect drug availability and supply information in pharmacies and healthcare institutions. You are advised to check with the respective institutions for such information.

Last updated on Sept 2023

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