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Common Questions About Cytalux

What is CYTALUX?

CYTALUX is an FDA-approved prescription medication that is given prior to surgery to adult patients who have ovarian cancer. It helps surgeons visualize ovarian cancer lesions during surgery.

What is CYTALUX made of?

CYTALUX is made of two primary components: a compound that is similar to folic acid (which is an essential vitamin for the body) and a dye that allows it to light up with a special camera, called a near-infrared imaging system, during surgery.

Why should my doctor consider using CYTALUX?

Preoperative scans and surgical skill are critical tools for a successful surgery. However, ovarian cancer cells are not always visible to the naked eye – they can hide in plain sight. CYTALUX gives your surgeon an additional measure of “sight” that can help them to identify ovarian cancer as they operate.

Is there anyone who should not take CYTALUX?

CYTALUX may cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman. There are no available human data to evaluate for a drug-associated risk of major birth defects, miscarriage, or other adverse maternal or fetal outcomes. Contact your healthcare provider with a known or suspected pregnancy.

Are there any requirements prior to taking CYTALUX?

Folic acid may reduce binding of CYTALUX to folate receptors. Folate, Folic Acid, or Folate containing supplements should not be taken within 48 hours before administration of CYTALUX. Talk to your doctor if you are taking any of these.

Can Infusion Reactions occur?

Adverse reactions consisting of nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, flushing, indigestion, chest discomfort, and itching were reported during the administration of CYTALUX. Your doctor may treat you with antihistamines and/or anti-nausea medication prior to or during administration of CYTALUX.

Can errors occur with the use of CYTALUX during surgery?

Errors may occur with the use of CYTALUX to detect ovarian cancer. Sometimes cells may light up even if they are not cancerous or those that are cancerous may not light up. Also, non-cancerous cells from other areas may light up, such as areas of the bowel, kidneys, lymph nodes, and inflamed tissue.

What are the most common side effects of CYTALUX?

Safety data is supported by 3 clinical studies across 294 patients. The most common side effects of CYTALUX reported across the clinical trials were nausea (15%), vomiting (5.8%), abdominal pain (2.7%), flushing (1.7%), indigestion (1%), chest discomfort (1%), itching (1%), and allergic reaction (1%) during administration or infusion. During the Phase 3 clinical study, there were zero serious drug-related adverse events reported and 97% of drug-related adverse events were mild or moderate. Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away. These are not all the possible side effects of CYTALUX. For more information, ask your healthcare provider.

When and How is CYTALUX Administered?

CYTALUX is administered via an intravenous infusion, which means it will be injected into a vein via an IV line over a period of 60 minutes. This will occur between 1 and 9 hours prior to your surgical procedure.

Is CYTALUX covered by my insurance?

Generally, there is no separate cost to the patient for CYTALUX above and beyond the cost of the surgical procedure. Contact your hospital and/or insurance provider for more details.

Does CYTALUX treat the cancer?

CYTALUX is not a treatment for cancer. It enhances your surgeon’s ability to see ovarian cancer in real time during your procedure.

How do I ask my doctor if CYTALUX will be used during my surgery?

As a new technology, CYTALUX is not widely available. Our patient brochure (download it here) can help you start a discussion about CYTALUX with your doctor.

For a list of medical centers currently using CYTALUX, please contact us.

See full Prescribing Information for more details.

If you still have questions, speak with your doctor.
Download our patient brochure to guide your conversation with your healthcare provider.

Download Patient Brochure