Mar 24, 2013 - 11:19 am
I have heard several people discuss adding Cimetidine (Tagamet) to their treatment for its possible anti-tumor action ... could those who use it or are familiar please discuss it in really simply laymen (or laywomen) terms?
The medication has been spoken of favorably and also suggested to newcomers. Seems it would be nice to have some simple, straight-forward information accumulated so that it could be easily searched on the forum.
I am thinking of this as simply an informational thread. Of course, healthy discussion encouraged but please play nice.
Here is all I know or think I know:
1) It is an over-the-counter medication marketed as Tagamet, Tagamet HB, and Tagamet HB200 typically prescribed to relieve and prevent heartburn by suppressing gastric acid secretion.
2) It comes in tablets, liquid, and injectable.
3) The commercial name Tagamet stems from fusing the two words antagonist and cimetidine.
4) Off-label uses have included relieving pain and symptoms of herpes zoster
5) It seems that studies in Asia have linked cimetidine combined with long term, continuous low dose 5FU has resulted in unusually long survival for Stage 3 cancer colorectal patients. Also, I found some positive articles in the Britsh Journal of Cancer from 2002.
6) Possible postive effects for colorectal cancer: a) it acts against metastases via inhibition of tumor cell adhesivenes; b) histamine acts as a growth factor in various tumor cell types via the activation of H2 receptors; and cimetidine antagonizes this effect as an anti-histamine; c) Cimetidine acts as an immunomodulator by enhancing the host’s immune response to tumor cells, via inhibition on T-cell suppressor activity; d) acts as an antiangiogenic (inhibit growth of blood vessels).
7) Possible adverse effects: Since cimetidine is a known inhibitor of multiple forms of enzymes that are the major enzymes involved in drug metabolism and bioactivation -- this inhibition forms the basis of some of the numerous drug interations that occur between cimetidine and other drugs. It is listed as having a potential increase on the effects of certain opiod medications. It can also interact with certain psychoactive medications such as tricyclic antidepressants and SSRIs causing increased blood levels.