Nubeqa (darolutamide) is a prescription drug that’s used to treat certain types of prostate cancer. Nubeqa can cause side effects that range from mild to serious. Examples include tiredness and constipation.

Specifically, Nubeqa is used in adults to treat:

The prostate is a small gland in the lower abdomen in males.* Hormone-sensitive prostate cancer responds to treatments that lower the body’s level of testosterone (a type of hormone). This means growth of the cancer is slowed or stopped. Castration-resistant prostate cancer doesn’t respond to surgeries or medications used to lower testosterone levels.

The active ingredient in Nubeqa is darolutamide. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.) The drug comes as a tablet that you swallow.

Keep reading to learn about the common, mild, and serious side effects that Nubeqa can cause. For a general overview of the drug, including details about its uses, see this article.

* In this article, the term “male” refers to someone’s sex assigned at birth. For information about the difference between sex and gender, see this article.

Below are just a few of the more common side effects reported by people who took Nubeqa in studies. These side effects can vary depending on what condition the drug is treating.

More common side effects in people taking Nubeqa with docetaxel for hormone-sensitive prostate cancer that’s metastatic include:

  • constipation*
  • skin rash
  • decreased appetite
  • minor bleeding, such as mild nosebleeds
  • weight gain

More common side effects in people taking Nubeqa for castration-resistant prostate cancer that’s not metastatic include:

  • tiredness
  • pain in the hands, arms, legs, or feet
  • skin rash

The following sections include more side effects of Nubeqa. Each person’s experiences with side effects may differ.

* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Side effects explained” section below.

Mild side effects have been reported with Nubeqa in studies. These side effects can vary depending on what condition the drug is treating.

Mild side effects in people taking Nubeqa with docetaxel for hormone-sensitive prostate cancer that’s metastatic include:

Mild side effects in people taking Nubeqa for castration-resistant prostate cancer that’s not metastatic include:

  • pain in the hands, arms, legs, or feet
  • skin rash
  • tiredness

In most cases, these side effects should be temporary. And some may be easily managed. But if you have symptoms that are ongoing or bothersome, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. And do not stop taking Nubeqa unless your doctor recommends it.

Nubeqa may cause mild side effects other than those listed above. See the drug’s prescribing information for details.

* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Side effects explained” section below.
† An allergic reaction is possible after taking Nubeqa, but this side effect wasn’t reported in studies.

Serious side effects have been reported with Nubeqa. Note that these side effects can vary depending on what condition you’re taking Nubeqa to treat. Possible serious side effects include:

If you develop serious side effects while taking Nubeqa, call your doctor right away. If the side effects seem life threatening or you think you’re having a medical emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number.

* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Side effects explained” section below.
† An allergic reaction is possible after taking Nubeqa, but this side effect wasn’t reported in studies.

Note: After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves a drug, it tracks and reviews side effects of the medication. If you’d like to notify the FDA about a side effect you’ve had with Nubeqa, visit MedWatch.

Learn more about some of the side effects Nubeqa may cause.

Ischemic heart disease

Ischemic heart disease was an uncommon side effect reported in studies of Nubeqa. It was reported in studies for both conditions Nubeqa treats. Ischemic heart disease is a blockage of the arteries in your heart. This side effect may result in other serious heart problems, such as heart attack or heart failure. Fatal cases occurred in Nubeqa’s studies but were rare.

Ischemic heart disease may cause symptoms such as:

  • chest pain or pressure
  • shortness of breath

If they aren’t well managed, certain health conditions can increase the risk of ischemic heart disease when taking Nubeqa. These include high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

What might help

If you have questions about your risk of this side effect during Nubeqa treatment, talk with your doctor. They’ll recommend ways to manage any other health conditions you may have. This often involves taking medications and maintaining healthy dietary and lifestyle habits.

During Nubeqa treatment, watch for symptoms of ischemic heart disease. If you have any symptoms that seem life threatening, call 911 or your local emergency number right away.

Constipation

Constipation was a common side effect reported in studies of Nubeqa for hormone-sensitive prostate cancer that’s metastatic. In these studies, severe constipation was rare.

Constipation may cause symptoms such as:

  • infrequent bowel movements
  • hard stools that are difficult to pass
  • pain or bloating in your abdomen

This side effect wasn’t reported in studies of Nubeqa for castration-resistant prostate cancer that’s not metastatic.

What might help

If you have constipation during Nubeqa treatment, consider the following home remedies and over-the-counter (OTC) options to relieve symptoms:

  • Increase your water intake.
  • Make regular exercise part of your routine.
  • Eat more foods high in fiber, such as vegetables.
  • Add a fiber supplement, such as Metamucil (psyllium), to your diet.
  • Try taking a laxative, such as Miralax (polyethylene glycol) or Dulcolax (bisacodyl).

If your constipation feels severe, talk with your doctor. They may recommend pausing Nubeqa or reducing your dosage to see whether your symptoms ease. Once your bowel movements are more regular, your doctor may recommend continuing Nubeqa or resuming your previous dosage. They also may suggest home remedies and OTC options such as those listed above.

Allergic reaction

Like most drugs, Nubeqa can cause an allergic reaction in some people. But this side effect wasn’t reported in studies.

Symptoms can be mild to serious and can include:

  • skin rash
  • itchiness
  • flushing (temporary warmth, redness, or deepening of skin color)
  • swelling under your skin (usually in your eyelids, lips, hands, or feet)
  • swelling of your mouth, tongue, or throat, which can make it hard to breathe

What might help

If you have mild symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as a mild rash, call your doctor right away. They may suggest a treatment to manage your symptoms. Examples include:

  • an antihistamine you swallow, such as Benadryl (diphenhydramine)
  • a product you apply to your skin, such as hydrocortisone cream

If your doctor confirms you’ve had a mild allergic reaction to Nubeqa, they’ll decide whether you should continue taking it.

If you have symptoms of a severe allergic reaction, such as swelling or difficulty breathing, call 911 or your local emergency number right away. These symptoms could be life threatening and require immediate medical care.

If your doctor confirms you’ve had a serious allergic reaction to Nubeqa, they may have you switch to a different treatment.

Keeping track of side effects

During your Nubeqa treatment, consider taking notes on any side effects you’re having. You can then share this information with your doctor. This is especially helpful when you first start taking a new drug or using a combination of treatments.

Your side effect notes can include things such as:

  • what dose of the drug you were taking when you had the side effect
  • how soon you had the side effect after starting that dose
  • what your symptoms were
  • how your symptoms affected your daily activities
  • what other medications you were taking
  • any other information you feel is important

Keeping notes and sharing them with your doctor will help them learn more about how Nubeqa affects you. They can then use this information to adjust your treatment plan if needed.

Below is important information you should consider before taking Nubeqa.

Warnings

Nubeqa can sometimes cause harmful effects in people who have certain conditions. This is known as a drug-condition interaction. Other factors may also affect whether Nubeqa is a good treatment option for you.

Talk with your doctor about your health history before you take Nubeqa. Be sure to tell them if any of the following factors apply to you:

Alcohol and Nubeqa

No interactions between alcohol and Nubeqa are known.

But alcohol and Nubeqa may cause some similar side effects, such as nausea. So, consuming alcohol while taking Nubeqa may make nausea worse.

If you have questions about consuming alcohol during Nubeqa treatment, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding with Nubeqa

Before starting Nubeqa treatment, it’s important to talk with your doctor if you have a sexual partner who is pregnant or can become pregnant.

Pregnancy

Nubeqa is not safe to take during pregnancy. Note that Nubeqa is approved to treat certain types of prostate cancer in males.* The drug isn’t prescribed to females* and hasn’t been studied in pregnancy. But based on how the drug works, it may cause fetal harm or pregnancy loss.

Let your doctor know if you have a partner who is pregnant or can become pregnant. In either case, they will advise using an effective form of birth control (such as condoms) throughout Nubeqa treatment. They’ll also advise using that method for 1 week after your Nubeqa treatment ends.

Breastfeeding

It isn’t known whether Nubeqa is safe to take while breastfeeding. Nubeqa is approved to treat certain types of prostate cancer in males* and hasn’t been studied in females.*

* In this article, we use the terms “male” and “female” to refer to someone’s sex assigned at birth. For information about the difference between sex and gender, see this article.

Like most drugs, Nubeqa can cause a number of side effects that range from mild to serious. Some are temporary and go away after a few days to weeks, while others may last longer. If you have questions about side effects that Nubeqa can cause, talk with your doctor.

Examples of questions to help get you started include:

  • Do any of my other medications increase my risk of having side effects from Nubeqa?
  • What can I do to help prevent Nubeqa side effects related to the heart?
  • Do I need any special tests or appointments to monitor for possible side effects of this medication?

To learn more about Nubeqa, see these articles:

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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.