Retevmo (selpercatinib)

Reviewed by: HU Medical Review Board | Last reviewed: September 2023

RetevmoTM (selpercatinib) is a targeted therapy that is used to treat adults with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with abnormal RET genes that is:1

  • Locally advanced, or
  • Has spread to other parts of the body (metastatic)

Retevmo should only be used by people with NSCLC who have certain changes in the RET gene. Your doctor can determine if it is right for you through biomarker testing. Talk to your doctor about getting tested for all treatable cancer biomarkers.1

What are the ingredients in Retevmo?

The active ingredient in Retevmo is selpercatinib.1

How does Retevmo work?

Retevmo blocks a protein called “rearranged during transfection” (RET). Normally, RET is a healthy protein that is automatically switched on or off depending on the body’s needs. But sometimes, accidental rearrangements in our DNA cause changes to the RET gene. The changes in the RET gene can result in the RET protein being switched on continuously and can lead to uncontrolled cancer cell growth.2

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RET gene changes are present in about 2 percent of NSCLC cases. Retevmo blocks the overactive protein and prevents tumor growth. However, it can also affect healthy cells and cause side effects.1,2

What are the possible side effects?

The most common side effects of Retevmo include:1

  • Swelling of your arms, legs, hands, or feet (edema)
  • Diarrhea
  • Tiredness
  • Dry mouth
  • High blood pressure
  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation
  • Rash
  • Nausea
  • Headache

These are not all the possible side effects of Retevmo. Talk to your doctor about what to expect when taking Retevmo. You also should call your doctor if you have any changes that concern you when taking Retevmo.

Other things to know

Before starting treatment with Retevmo, tell your doctor if you have:1

  • Liver problems
  • Lung or breathing problems other than lung cancer
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart problems, including a condition called QT prolongation
  • Bleeding problems
  • An upcoming surgery

Retevmo can harm an unborn baby. If you or your partner can become pregnant, you should use birth control during treatment and for some time after the last dose of Retevmo. You should also not breastfeed during treatment with Retevmo and for some time after the last dose. Talk to your doctor about your options for birth control and breastfeeding while taking Retevmo.1

Retevmo can interact with other medicines and increase your risk of side effects. During treatment with Retevmo, do not take:1

  • St. John's wort
  • Drugs called proton pump inhibitors such as dexlansoprazole, esomeprazole, lansoprazole, omeprazole, pantoprazole sodium, rabeprazole
  • H2 blockers such as famotidine, nizatidine, and cimetidine
  • Antacids that contain aluminum, magnesium, calcium, simethicone, or buffered medicines

Before beginning treatment for lung cancer, tell your doctor about all your health conditions and any other drugs, vitamins, or supplements you are taking. This includes over-the-counter drugs.

For more information, read the full prescribing information of Retevmo.