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BLENOXANE
BLEOMYCIN - INJECTION

Important Note

The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.

BLEOMYCIN - INJECTION

(blee-oh-MY-sin)

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Blenoxane

WARNING: Rarely, bleomycin can cause a serious, allergic-like reaction, mainly in lymphoma patients. Because bleomycin is a useful drug for treating lymphoma, the manufacturer recommends giving a lower dosage for the first two doses while checking for signs of this serious reaction. Tell your doctor immediately if any of the following serious side effects occur: dizziness or fainting, confusion, fever, chills, trouble breathing. Rarely, this drug can also cause swelling/inflammation of the lungs (pneumonitis), which could lead to permanent lung damage (pulmonary fibrosis).

Uses

Bleomycin is used in combination with other medicines to treat various forms of cancer.

How To Use

This is a potent medication. Take it exactly as prescribed. Do not stop taking this medication, even if you feel nauseated or experience vomiting. If you vomit shortly after a dose, or if you miss a dose, contact your doctor.

Side Effects

Vomiting, loss of appetite, weight loss, darkening or thickening of the skin, itching, skin rash or colored bumps on the fingertips, elbows or palms, swollen fingers, or changes in fingernails or toenails are common side effects. Taking the medication on an empty stomach may help relieve vomiting. Changes in diet such as eating several small meals or limiting activity may help lessen some of these effects. In some cases, drug therapy may be necessary to prevent or relieve nausea and vomiting. Temporary hair loss is another common side effect. Normal hair growth should return after treatment has ended. Notify your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms: fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath, sores in the mouth or on lips, confusion, faintness, sweating, wheezing. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Precautions

Smoking tobacco may increase lung-related side effects. Tell your doctor if you have: kidney disease, liver disease, lung disease. Before having surgery of any kind or emergency treatment, inform the doctor or dentist that you have been receiving this medication. Caution is advised when using this drug in the elderly because they may be more sensitive to the effects of the drug, especially the side effects involving the lungs. Contraceptive (birth control) measures are recommended for use in men and women while taking this medication. This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Consult your doctor before using this drug. It is not known if this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Drug Interactions

Tell your doctor of all prescription and nonprescription drugs you may use, especially: digoxin, phenytoin. Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately.

Notes

Regular doctor visits are important. Frequent blood tests will be done to monitor therapy.

Missed Dose

It is important that you remain closely monitored by your doctor,

Storage

Refrigerate. Reconstituted solutions are stable for 24 hours at room temperature and for 14 days if refrigerated.

Medical Alert

Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).