This anticancer medication is used to treat recurrent or persistent ovarian cancer in women.

IUPAC name: 2-N,2-N,4-N,4-N,6-N,6-N-hexamethyl-1,3,5-triazine-2,4,6-triamine

Drug class: Alkylating antineoplastic agent

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Route of administration: Oral

Is it a drug that needs a prescription? YES

Is it an OTC drug? NO

Mechanism of action

Altretamine is metabolized into alkylating agents, which cause malignant cells to be damaged. This prevents cancer cells from growing and multiplying.

Side effects

Nausea, vomiting, decreased appetite, anemia, decreased WBCs, drowsiness, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, confusion, mood changes, temporary hair loss.

Serious side effects

Fever/chills, sore throat, easy bleeding or bruising, numbness of hands and feet, loss of consciousness, uncoordinated movements of arm or legs, yellowing of skin, dark urine, rash/itching. 


Take the following precautions before using this drug and notify your doctor:

  • If you are allergic to it or if you have any other allergies,
  • If you are taking any other medications (prescribed, non-prescribed, or herbal products),
  • If you have a medical history of nervous system problems, renal disease, hepatic disease, infections, blood disorders (including anemia, decreased WBCs), blood clots,
  • Avoid contact with people who have infections to prevent the spread of infections.
  • Limit alcohol consumption as it makes you drowsy and loss of alertness may occur.
  • Use of this medication is not recommended during pregnancy.
  • Breastfeeding should be avoided while using this drug.
  • You should not become pregnant while taking this drug. If you plan to get pregnant, consult your doctor.

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