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Joint swelling, fluid retention, and muscle aches are some of most commonly reported side effects of Zytiga. Although most reactions to this medication tend to be minor, there are serious problems that can occur during treatment. Contact your healthcare provider right away if you develop confusion, yellowing of the whites of the eyes or skin, or other potentially serious problems.

An Introduction to Zytiga Side Effects

Just like any medicine, Zytiga™ (abiraterone acetate) can cause side effects. However, not everyone who takes the medication will have problems. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Zytiga. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)

Common Side Effects of Zytiga

Zytiga has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, one group of people received Zytiga, while another group was given a placebo (a "sugar pill" that does not contain any active ingredients). As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred, how often they appeared, and how they compared to the placebo.
In these studies, the most common Zytiga side effects included:
  • Joint swelling and discomfort -- in up to 29.5 percent of people
  • Decreased blood potassium levels (hypokalemia) -- up to 28.0 percent
  • Fluid retention (edema), especially of the legs and feet -- up to 26.7 percent
  • Muscle aches, spasms, or stiffness -- up to 26.2 percent
  • Hot flushes -- up to 19.0 percent
  • Diarrhea -- up to 17.6 percent
  • Urinary tract infection (UTI) -- up to 11.5 percent
  • Cough -- up to 10.6 percent
  • Increased blood pressure (hypertension) -- up to 8.5 percent
  • Increased urination -- up to 7.2 percent
  • Irregular heartbeat (arrhythmia) -- up to 7.2 percent.
Other common side effects, occurring in 2.3 to 6.2 percent of people, included:
  • An urgency to urinate during the night (nocturia)
  • Indigestion or heartburn
  • Cold-like symptoms
  • Chest pain (angina) or discomfort
  • Heart failure.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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