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Drugs reference index «busulfan»

busulfan


busulfan

Generic Name: busulfan (bue SUL fan)Brand Names: Busulfex, Myleran

What is busulfan?

Busulfan is a cancer medication that interferes with the growth of cancer cells and slows their spread in the body.

Busulfan is used to treat the symptoms of chronic myelogenous leukemia (a type of blood cancer). Busulfan is not a cure for leukemia.

Busulfan may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about busulfan?

You should not use busulfan if you are allergic to it. Do not use busulfan without telling your doctor if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Use effective birth control, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment.

Before you receive busulfan, tell your doctor if you have a weak immune system, a seizure disorder, a history of head injury or breathing problems, or if you have recently received other cancer medications or radiation treatment.

Busulfan can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections. Your blood will need to be tested on a weekly or monthly basis. Your liver function may also need to be tested on a regular basis. Busulfan can have long-lasting effects on your body. Do not miss any follow-up visits to your doctor for blood or urine tests.

Contact your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), weight loss, mouth sores, or unusual weakness.

Some people treated with busulfan have developed new forms of cancer. Talk to your doctor about your specific risks and benefits of using this medication.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using busulfan?

You should not use busulfan if you are allergic to it.

If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely use this medication:

  • a weak immune system (bone marrow depression) caused by other cancer medications or radiation treatment;

  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;

  • history of head injury; or

  • a history of lung or breathing problems.

FDA pregnancy category D. Do not use busulfan without telling your doctor if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Use effective birth control, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment.

This medication may affect fertility (your ability to have children), whether you are a man or a woman.

It is not known whether busulfan passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Some people treated with busulfan have developed new forms of cancer. Talk to your doctor about your specific risks and benefits of using this medication.

How should I take busulfan?

Use this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use it in larger amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. You must remain under the care of a doctor while using busulfan.

Take the busulfan tablet with a full glass of water.

Busulfan injection is given through a needle placed into a vein in your upper chest (central IV). You will receive this injection in a clinic or hospital setting. You will also receive other medications to help prevent certain side effects of busulfan.

Busulfan injection is usually given every 6 hours for 4 days in a row. The medicine must be given slowly through the IV, and each infusion can take at least 2 hours to complete.

Busulfan can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections. This can make it easier for you to bleed from an injury or get sick from being around others who are ill.

To be sure your blood cells do not get too low, your blood will need to be tested on a weekly or monthly basis. Your liver function may also need to be tested on a regular basis. Busulfan can have long-lasting effects on your body. Do not miss any follow-up visits to your doctor for blood or urine tests.

Contact your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), weight loss, mouth sores, or unusual weakness.

Store busulfan tablets at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

See also: Busulfan dosage in more detail

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

Since busulfan injection is given by a healthcare professional, you are not likely to miss a dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, flu symptoms, mouth sores, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), pale skin, feeling tired or short of breath, rapid heart rate.

What should I avoid while using busulfan?

Avoid being near people who have colds, the flu, or other contagious illnesses. Contact your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.

Do not receive a "live" vaccine while you are being treated with busulfan, and avoid coming into contact with anyone who has recently received a live vaccine. There is a chance that the virus could be passed on to you. Live vaccines include measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), oral polio, chickenpox (varicella), BCG (Bacillus Calmette and Guérin), and nasal flu vaccine.

Busulfan side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
  • pale skin, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums);

  • signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, loss of appetite, weight loss, mouth sores, unusual weakness;

  • persistent cough, congestion, low fever, feeling short of breath (these symptoms may occur several months or years after using busulfan);

  • weight gain, stomach swelling or tenderness, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • coughing up blood;

  • stomach pain, vomiting, sharp chest pain, trouble breathing;

  • blurred vision, eye pain, or seeing halos around lights;

  • seizure (convulsions); or

  • fever, sore throat, and headache with a severe blistering, peeling, and red skin rash.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • missed menstrual periods; or

  • darkened skin color.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Busulfan Dosing Information

Usual Adult Dose for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia:

Initial dose: 60 mcg/kg or 1.8 mg/m2 orally once a day. The usual dosage range for remission induction is 4 to 8 mg/day.

Usual Adult Dose for Bone Marrow Transplantation:

2 to 4 mg/kg (up to 560 mg) orally every 6 hours for 4 days. High dose cyclophosphamide has been used in combination with busulfan to prepare patients for bone marrow transplantation.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia:

Initial Dose:Less than or equal to 12 kg : 1.1 mg/kg (based on actual body weight.)Greater than 12 kg: 0.8 mg/kg (based on actual body weight.)Doses are administered every 6 hours as 2 hour infusions over 4 days for a total of 16 doses.Therapeutic drug monitoring and dose adjustment following the first dose is recommended.Adjust subsequent doses to achieve the desired target AUC (1125 uM/min) using the formula below:Adjusted Dose (mg) = Actual Dose (mg) x Target AUC (uM/min) / Actual AUC (uM/min)

Usual Pediatric Dose for Bone Marrow Transplantation:

Marrow-ablative conditioning regimen:0.5 mg/kg to 1 mg/kg orally every 6 hours for 4 days.Hematopoetic stem cell transplant program:Less than or equal to 6 years:40 mg/m2/dose every 6 hours for 4 days.

What other drugs will affect busulfan?

Tell your doctor about all other medications you use, especially:

  • acetaminophen (Tylenol, others);

  • itraconazole (Sporanox); or

  • phenytoin (Dilantin).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with busulfan. Tell your doctor about all your prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about busulfan.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.01. Revision Date: 10/16/2009 9:14:15 AM.
  • busulfan Intravenous Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
  • Busulfan MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Busulfan Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Busulfex Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Myleran Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Myleran MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)

See Also...

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