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When is best to take Imatinib?


Hi all

sorry if this is a dumb question but just wondered when people think is best to take Imatinib. I’m on 400mg once a day and it says ‘with or after food’. I’ve tended to be having mine either with my breakfast (literally half way through it) or just after I’ve finished, but wondering if I’m doing the right thing for optimal impact or whether I should e.g leave it half an hour or longer…

Any views welcome.



You're doing the right thing Dan. Best to have it with food, like you are doing, at a predictable time each day - which breakfast usually is! It's not that it works better or worse with/without food it's that it can make you feel naseous on an empty stomach.


Great, thanks David appreciate the reply 👍

Dan just to back David up my imatinib lives beside my toothbrush. I always brush my teeth after breakfast, and take the pill at the same time. This works from both the take with food viewpoint, and makes missing a dose less likely.

Thanks, Alastair - that’s a great tip 👍

I always take it after eating, on one occasion I asked my doctor that sometimes I ate at 1:30 p.m. but sometimes at 3:30 p.m. it depends on days, he told me that there was no problem taking it with a couple of hours of difference between some days and others as long as I do not take it 5 hours apart or more than that if it would be exaggerated, then my question is, how important is it to take it at exactly the same time? for example at 14.3 every day neither 10 minutes more nor 10 minutes less? for what reason? I will try to square it as much as possible although sometimes it is difficult since it is not always easy to eat at the same time due to various circumstances, regards.


You must take with food - on an empty stomach so sick . It took me a while to get the timing right. I take mine at 2am in the morning just before I go to sleep - we eat late 1030 pm and I then sleep through any side effect  - hope this helps 





to minimize, if not completely eliminate, the nausea that a high percentage of Imatinib 400mg users experience, take your Imatinib 400mg one hour after your largest meal of the day.  It works!

As long as its the same time each day you're good. Heavy meals make it less likely you'll get nausea but if that's not a problem then up to you when you take it

I remember reading there's some scientific reason why you should take it with a very large glass of water but i forgot what it is. Might be something to do with imatanib being a salt compound.

I write the dates for each pill on the blister pack. Surprised how often i can't remember if i took the dose or not....

I take my Imatinib in the middle of my lunch (my longest meal of the day). I mean, I start to eat, in the middle, I take the pill, and I continuous eating.


I've set an alarm on my mobile for the same time every day....just after breakfast. It seems to be working. I saw my consultant last week, on my last blood test it shows my BCR/ABL  as 0.200.... he now says I'm starting remission.... I was diagnosed in December 2020. Still a very long way to go but getting there. 

Take care and stay safe

Denise x