Lutetium Therapy Patient Information Sheet

An appointment has been made for you to attend for administration of the treatment. An inpatient bed has been booked for you at 6 North ward.

Please arrive to the ward as instructed (usualy the night before treatment) and if you are going to be late please inform the nuclear medicine department on 020 3313 1428 or our Endocrine Registrar through the Charing Cross Switchboard (020 3311 1234) on bleep 4998.

The treatment will be performed early the following morning. Usually you can go home the next day, but you may be required to stay for a second night.

You can eat and drink as normal. You need to bring with you a change of clothes, toiletries and books/newspapers to read. The room has a television and radio.

What is Lu-177 treatment?

Lu-177 is a radioactive substance that we can add to a carrier called DOTATATE. Once in your body, the Lu-177 DOTATATE attaches to specific tumour cells and destroys these cancerous cells.

It is known to be effective in:

    • neuroendocrine tumours

    • paragangliomas, neuroblastomas

    • certain types of thyroid cancer

How is Lu-177 treatment given?

The treatment is given through a drip into your vein over the course of one hour. You will also receive a fluid solution containing amino acids (proteins) through another drip over four 4 hours to protect your kidneys from the effect of radiation.

Is there any preparation before the treatment?

No, you do not need to take any special precautions. However, if you feel unwell before the date of the treatment please inform us on the number above, or by contacting our Endocrine Registrar through the Charing Cross Switchboard (020 3311 1234) on bleep 4998.

Can I have treatment if I am pregnant or breast-feeding?

No. Women who are pregnant or breast-feeding must not be given treatment. If there is any possibility that you may be pregnant, you must tell us. You are advised not to become pregnant without consulting your specialist following the treatment. You must take adequate contraceptive care.

Will there be any danger to my family or friends?

You will usually be discharge the following morning after treatement because this type of treatment delivers its radiation within your body and only very small amounts exit your body. As a precaution, during the treatment no visitors are allowed. Following discharge your family and friends are not at risk but we recommend some sensible precautions:

    • Always flush the toilet twice after use for one week after the treatment

    • Refrain from all contact with young children and pregnant women for 3 days

    • Restrict close contact with other adults for 3 days

    • Avoid sharing a bed with another person for 3 days

On the day of treatment you will be given specific advice according to your individual circumstances as the advice depends on the amount of treatment your doctor prescribes.

Investigations that will be needed for the treatment

You need a scan before the treatment know as octreotide scan or Ga-68 PET/CT which you may have had done already. You will need tests which your doctor will arrange for you, as follows:

Blood tests 2 weeks before the treatment

A scan 1 hour after the treatment is given

Blood tests around 6 weeks after the treatment

How many treatments will I need?

Usually 3-4 treatments are given every 12-16 weeks but you will be seen in our clinic after each treatment to reassess your health and response to the therapy.

Are there any side effects?

We have not experienced any serious side effects in our patients. The most reported side effect is nausea but we will give you an injection before the treatment to prevent this and we will give you tablets to take home.

Other reported side effects are:

    • Temporary reduction in your blood count and white cells

    • Transient hair loss

    • A reduction in kidney function

What if I have any further questions?

Ask your doctor at your next clinic appointment or if urgent contact our Endocrine Registrar through the Charing Cross Switchboard (020 3311 1234) on bleep 4998. We will be able to discuss your queries with you.

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