Pentostatin Intravenous

Name: Pentostatin Intravenous

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Nipent

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Powder for Solution

Therapeutic Class: Antineoplastic Agent

Pharmacologic Class: Antimetabolite

Proper Use of pentostatin

pentostatin often causes nausea and vomiting. However, it is very important that you continue to receive the medicine even if you begin to feel ill. Ask your doctor for ways to lessen these effects.

You will receive pentostatin while you are in a hospital or cancer treatment center. A nurse or other trained health professional will give you pentostatin.

pentostatin is given through a needle placed in one of your veins.

Precautions While Using pentostatin

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that pentostatin is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

Using pentostatin while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.

You should not use pentostatin if you are also taking fludarabine (Fludara®). Taking it together with pentostatin may increase the chance of serious side effects.

While you are being treated with pentostatin, and after you stop treatment with it, do not have any immunizations (vaccinations) without your doctor's approval. Pentostatin may lower your body's resistance and there is a chance you might get the infection the immunization is meant to prevent. In addition, other persons living in your household should not take oral polio vaccine since there is a chance they could pass the polio virus on to you. Also, avoid persons who have taken oral polio vaccine. Do not get close to them and do not stay in the same room with them for very long. If you cannot take these precautions, you should consider wearing a protective face mask that covers the nose and mouth.

Pentostatin can lower the number of white blood cells in your blood temporarily, increasing the chance of getting an infection (e.g., pneumonia). It can also lower the number of platelets, which are necessary for proper blood clotting. If this occurs, there are certain precautions you can take, especially when your blood count is low, to reduce the risk of infection or bleeding:

  • If you can, avoid people with infections. Check with your doctor immediately if you think you are getting an infection or if you get a fever or chills, cough or hoarseness, lower back or side pain, or painful or difficult urination.
  • Check with your doctor immediately if you notice any unusual bleeding or bruising; black, tarry stools; blood in the urine or stools; or pinpoint red spots on your skin.
  • Be careful when using a regular toothbrush, dental floss, or toothpick. Your medical doctor, dentist, or nurse may recommend other ways to clean your teeth and gums. Check with your medical doctor before having any dental work done.
  • Do not touch your eyes or the inside of your nose unless you have just washed your hands and have not touched anything else in the meantime.
  • Be careful not to cut yourself when you are using sharp objects such as a safety razor or fingernail or toenail cutters.
  • Avoid contact sports or other situations where bruising or injury could occur.

If you develop a skin rash or any allergic reaction to pentostatin, stop using the medicine and check with your doctor as soon as possible.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Side Effects

Mild rash/itching may occur. Tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly if any of these effects occur. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, increased sweating, or mouth sores may also occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

People using this medication may have serious side effects. However, your doctor has prescribed this drug because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk ofside effects. Careful monitoring by your doctor may decrease your risk.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine), dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, severe stomach/abdominal pain, dizziness, drowsiness, headache, trouble sleeping, shortness of breath, cough, unusual weakness/tiredness, swelling ankles/feet, muscle/joint pain, muscle spasm, mental/mood changes (e.g., depression, anxiety), numbness/tingling of the skin, decreased sexual ability/interest, fainting, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, vision/hearing changes, pain/redness/swelling of arms or legs.

Get medical help right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: seizures, chest pain.

This medication may cause very serious blood disorders (decreased bone marrow function leading to low number of blood cells such as red cells, white cells, and platelets). This effect can cause anemia, decrease your body's ability to fight an infection, or cause your body to bruise or bleed more easily. Tell your doctor right away if you develop any of the following symptoms: signs of infection (e.g., fever, persistent sore throat), easy bruising/bleeding, unusual tiredness, fast/pounding heartbeat.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

List Pentostatin Vial side effects by likelihood and severity.

Precautions

Before using pentostatin, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney disease, liver disease, recent/current infections, blood/bone marrow disorder.

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using this medication.

Do not have immunizations/vaccinations without the consent of your doctor, and avoid contact with people who have recently received oral polio vaccine or flu vaccine inhaled through the nose.

Wash your hands well to prevent the spread of infections.

To lower your risk of getting cut, bruised, or injured, use caution with sharp objects like razors and nail cutters, and avoid activities such as contact sports.

This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby. Therefore, it is important to prevent pregnancy while using this medication. Consult your doctor for more details and to discuss the use of reliable forms of birth control (e.g., condoms, birth control pills) while using this medication. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor right away.

It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Because of the possible risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Overdose

If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: trouble breathing, seizures, fainting, change in the amount of urine, severe stomach/abdominal pain.

Notes

Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., blood count, kidney/liver function) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.

Missed Dose

For the best possible benefit, it is important to receive each scheduled dose of this medication as directed. If you miss a dose, contact your doctor right away to establish a new dosing schedule.

Storage

Not applicable. This medication is given in a clinic and will not be stored at home.Information last revised November 2016. Copyright(c) 2016 First Databank, Inc.

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