This page contains brief details about the drug , it's indication, dosage & administaration, mechanism of action, related brands with strength, warnings and common side effects.

Background and Date of Approval

Epirubicin is an antineoplastic drug that belongs to the class anthracyclines. FDA approved epirubicin on November 15, 2006, for the treatment of breast cancer, stomach, and bowel cancer, ovarian cancer, and lung cancer.

Mechanism of Action of undefined

Epirubicin inhibits DNA, RNA, and protein synthesis by exerting cytotoxic activity. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of the cancer cells. This medicine helps to selectively kill the cancer cells rather than the normal, healthy cells. 

Uses of undefined

Epirubicin is an intravenously administered drug. This medicine is used as adjuvant therapy in combination with other medications to treat breast cancer in patients who have had surgery to remove the tumor. It is also useful in treating breast, ovaries, stomach, bowel, and lung cancers. In addition, this medicine is also used to treat cancers of the blood-forming tissues, such as malignant lymphomas, leukemias, and multiple myeloma.

undefined Drug administaration and Dosage available

The drug should be administered only by healthcare professionals experienced with cancer chemotherapy. Your physician will determine the dose and frequency of administration based on the type of cancer and severity of the disease.  The medicine will be given as an infusion into a vein. Do not self-administer the injection.

Warnings, Precautions and Side Effects of undefined


This drug is intended to cause liver problems. Monitor liver function test regularly before and during the treatment. Long-term use of this medicine may cause tumor lysis syndrome, regular monitoring of blood uric acid levels, potassium, calcium, and creatinine levels after initial treatment is necessary. This medicine may cause severe fetal harm if taken during pregnancy. Inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning for pregnancy before initiating the treatment. 


This medicine may cause infertility in men and women; inform your physician if you are planning for pregnancy. If you are sexually active, you are advised to use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy.  Before initiating the treatment, inform your physician if you have kidney or liver problems, recent vaccination, or if you have any acute toxicities such as acute inflammation of the mouth, low white blood cell count, platelet count, or any infections. This medicine may increase your risk of blood clots.  Your healthcare professional may advise you to take certain blood tests to monitor the effectiveness and side effects of the therapy. 

Side Effects

Epirubicin side effects include hair loss, flushing, rash, itching, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, anemia, decreased WBC and platelets, eye infection, and irregular menstruation. Other serious side effects include congestive heart failure, increased blood urea levels, severe hypersensitivity reactions, and lung problems. 

Word Of Advice

Do not take this injection if you are allergic to Epirubicin or any other ingredients of this medicine, pregnant or breastfeeding, or have severe liver and bladder problems.Store Epirubicin in the refrigerator (2°C to 8°C). Do not freeze. Keep the injection away from the reach of children and pets. If you have missed any dosing appointments, inform your doctor and schedule immediately. Inform your physician if you are receiving radiation therapy with this medicine. Male patients with female partners of reproductive potential should use effective birth control during the treatment and for 3 months after the last dose. Do not breastfeed during the treatment and for 7 days after the last dose. The medicine may turn your urine red for 1 or 2 days after your treatment. 

Frequently Asked Question


  1. Epirubicin hydrochloride 2 mg/ml solution for injection - Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC) - (emc). [revised on 2016] [cited 2023 Mar 31]. Available from:
  2. HIGHLIGHTS OF PRESCRIBING INFORMATION - Epirubicin. [revised on 2019] [cited 2023 Mar 31]. Available from:
  3. KD Tripathi, Essentials of Medical Pharmacology, Anticancer drugs, 7th edition, 2013, 867.


The drug information on this page is not a substitute for medical advice. It is meant for educational purposes only. For further details, consult your doctor about your medical condition to know if you can receive this treatment.