What is a Generic Drug?

A generic drug is a copy of the brand-name drug with the same dosage, safety, strength, quality, consumption method, performance, and intended use. Before generics become available on the market, the generic company must prove it has the same active ingredients as the brand-name drug and works in the same way and in the same amount of time in the body.

The only differences between generics and their brand-name counterparts is that generics are less expensive and may look slightly different (eg. different shape or color), as trademarks laws prevent a generic from looking exactly like the brand-name drug.

Generics are less expensive because generic manufacturers don't have to invest large sums of money to develop a drug. When the brand-name patent expires, generic companies can manufacture a copy of the brand-name and sell it at a substantial discount.

Alecensa (Alectinib)


Alecensa (Alectinib)

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  • Product Details


    What is Alecensa?

    • Alecensa is a targeted therapy medication used to treat non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) that is ALK-positive. It is specifically designed for patients who have either progressed on or are intolerant to crizotinib.

    How does it work?

    • Alecensa works by targeting and inhibiting the activity of the ALK protein, which can promote the growth of cancer cells in ALK-positive NSCLC patients. By blocking the ALK protein, Alecensa can help slow down or stop the growth of these cancer cells.

    How is it supplied?

    • You can purchase Alecensa online at Canada Pharmacy in brand form.
    • Brand name Alecensa - 150mg tablets

    How should I store it?

    • Store your Alecensa at room temperature in its original container, away from moisture and heat. Ensure it is kept out of reach of children and pets.

    Fact Table




    US: FDA



    Legal status

    Rx Only

    Chemical Name


    Elimination half-life

    33 hours

    Dosage (Strength)

    150 mg


    Not yet classified



    Protein binding

    greater than 99%

    PubChem CID






    ATC code






    Routes of administration

    By mouth


    Should I take Alecensa with food?

    • You should take your dose with a meal or snack.

    Are there any special instructions?

    • Do not open your Alecensa capsules. You should swallow them whole.
    • If you miss a dose or vomit after taking a capsule, skip it, and continue with your next scheduled dose.

    What is the usual dose?

    • Take 600mg by mouth twice daily.
    • Your doctor could reduce your dose if you experience adverse effects.


    What is the active ingredient in Alecensa?

    • The active ingredient is alectinib hydrochloride.

    What are the inactive ingredients?


    Who should avoid taking Alecensa?

    • Do not use Alecensa if you have a known allergy to any of the ingredients.
    • Alecensa should not be used in pregnancy.
      • Female patients should avoid pregnancy during treatment and for one week after discontinuation. Visit our birth control page for more information.
      • Male patients should use contraception during therapy and for three months after discontinuation.

    What are the risks?

    • Tell your doctor if you experience any of the following adverse effects. They could reduce your dose, interrupt your therapy, or discontinue your treatment.
      • Symptomatic bradycardia
        • Slowed heart rate (less than 60 beats per minute)
        • Low blood pressure
        • Chest discomfort
        • Lightheadedness
        • Shortness of breath
      • Muscle pains
      • Difficulty breathing
      • Cough
      • Fever
    • Alecensa treatment can cause an increase in liver enzymes. Your doctor should periodically monitor your liver.
    • Alecensa treatment can cause your kidney function to decrease. Your doctor should monitor your kidney function.

    Side Effects

    What are the common Alecensa side effects?

    • Edema
    • Constipation
    • Low-grade anemia
    • Low-grade lymphocytopenia
    • Liver enzyme elevation
    • Hyperbilirubinemia
    • Muscle pain
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Fatigue

    What are the serious Alecensa side effects?

    • Bradyarrhythmia (see irregular heartbeat page)
    • Endocarditis
    • Intestinal perforation
    • High-grade anemia
    • Bleeding
    • High-grade lymphocytopenia
    • Increased creatinine kinase
    • Kidney impairment
    • Interstitial lung disease
    • Pneumonia
    • Pneumonitis
    • Pulmonary embolism


    1. DailyMed - ALECENSA- alectinib hydrochloride capsule. (2019). Retrieved April 07, 2020
    2. Alecensa. (n.d.). Retrieved April 07, 2020, from
    3. Corte, C. M., Viscardi, G., Liello, R. D., Fasano, M., Martinelli, E., Troiani, T., . . . Morgillo, F. (2018). Role and targeting of anaplastic lymphoma kinase in cancer. Molecular Cancer, 17(1). doi:10.1186/s12943-018-0776-2

    Frequently Asked Questions about Alecensa (Alectinib)

    What is Alecensa (Alectinib)?

    Alecensa is a prescription medication used to treat specific types of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). It belongs to a class of drugs known as ALK inhibitors.

    What types of lung cancer does Alecensa treat?

    Alecensa is primarily used to treat NSCLC that has specific genetic mutations, such as ALK (anaplastic lymphoma kinase) or ROS1 rearrangements.

    How does Alecensa work?

    Alecensa works by inhibiting the activity of the ALK protein or ROS1 protein, which are involved in the growth and spread of cancer cells. By blocking these proteins, Alecensa helps to slow down or stop the growth of cancer cells.

    Is Alecensa a chemotherapy drug?

    No, Alecensa is not a chemotherapy drug. It is a targeted therapy that specifically targets the genetic mutations associated with certain types of lung cancer.

    How is Alecensa taken?

    Alecensa is typically taken orally in the form of capsules or tablets. Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose and provide instructions on how to take it.

    Are there any common side effects of Alecensa?

    Common side effects of Alecensa may include fatigue, constipation, swelling (edema), muscle pain, and changes in liver function. However, the specific side effects can vary from person to person.

    What should I do if I experience side effects while taking Alecensa?

    If you experience side effects while taking Alecensa, it's important to contact your healthcare provider. They can provide guidance on managing side effects and may adjust your treatment if necessary.

    Can Alecensa be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

    Alecensa may harm an unborn baby, so it is generally not recommended during pregnancy. If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, discuss your options with your healthcare provider. It is also not recommended during breastfeeding, as it may pass into breast milk.

    Can I drink alcohol while taking Alecensa?

    It's generally advisable to avoid or limit alcohol consumption while taking Alecensa, as alcohol can interact with certain medications and potentially increase the risk of side effects.

    How long will I need to take Alecensa?

    The duration of Alecensa treatment can vary depending on your specific condition and how you respond to the medication. Your healthcare provider will determine the appropriate treatment duration.

    IMPORTANT NOTE: The above information is intended to increase awareness of health information and does not suggest treatment or diagnosis. This information is not a substitute for individual medical attention and should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. See your health care professional for medical advice and treatment.

    Product Code : 13263

  • Product Reviews


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