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Drugs reference index «cytarabine»

cytarabine

Generic Name: cytarabine (sye TAR a been)Brand names: Cytosar-U, Tarabine PFS, Cytosar

What is cytarabine?

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

Cytarabine is used to treat certain types of leukemia (blood cancers). Cytarabine is also used to treat leukemia associated with meningitis.

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

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

Do not receive this medication 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 receiving cytarabine, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have a breathing disorder such as asthma, or a history of stomach ulcer or bleeding.

Cytarabine 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. 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 cytarabine. The live vaccine may not work as well during this time, and may not fully protect you from disease.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving cytarabine?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to cytarabine.

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

  • asthma or other breathing disorder; or

  • a history of stomach ulcer or bleeding.

FDA pregnancy category D. This medication can cause harm to an unborn baby. Do not receive cytarabine without telling your doctor if you are pregnant. Use an effective form of birth control, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether cytarabine 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.

How is cytarabine given?

Cytarabine is given as an injection through a needle placed into a vein, under the skin, or into the space around the spinal cord. You will receive this injection in a clinic or hospital setting.

Tell your caregivers if you feel any burning, pain, or swelling around the IV needle when the medicine is injected.

Cytarabine 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 regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Contact your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your cytarabine injection.

What happens if I overdose?

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

Overdose symptoms may include extreme drowsiness, or changes in personality or behavior.

What should I avoid while receiving cytarabine?

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 cytarabine. The live vaccine may not work as well during this time, and may not fully protect you from disease.

Cytarabine side effects

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

  • eye pain or redness, problems with your vision;

  • sudden shortness of breath, dry cough;

  • unusual thoughts or behavior;

  • problems with urination;

  • black, bloody, or tarry stools;

  • coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds;

  • nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, itching, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or

  • fever, chest pain, muscle or bone pain, skin rash, tired feeling, and redness of the eyes (may occur 6 to 12 hours after your injection).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain;

  • mouth sores;

  • drowsiness, dizziness;

  • loss of appetite;

  • sores or swelling around your mouth or rectum;

  • sore throat;

  • hair loss; or

  • headache.

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.

Cytarabine Dosing Information

Usual Adult Dose for Acute Nonlymphocytic Leukemia:

As a part of a combination chemotherapy:100 mg/m2/day by continuous IV infusion (days 1 to 7) or 100 mg/m2 IV every 12 hours (days 1 to 7) with an anthracycline.

Usual Adult Dose for non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma:

Acute Leukemia Induction:100 to 200 mg/m2/day or 2 to 6 mg/kg/day as a continuous IV infusion over 24 hours or in divided doses by rapid injection for 5 to 10 days. This course may be repeated approximately every 2 weeks.For refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and acute myeloid leukemia:2 to 3 g/m2 IV every twelve hours for up to 12 doses The IV infusion generally takes place over 1 to 3 hours. The dose of cytarabine should be suspended or modified if the ANC is below 1000/mm3 or the platelet count is below 50,000/mm3.For chronic granulocytic leukemia / chronic myelogenous leukemia:20 mg/m2 subcutaneously for 10 days per month for 6 months with interferon alfa.

Usual Adult Dose for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia:

Acute Leukemia Induction:100 to 200 mg/m2/day or 2 to 6 mg/kg/day as a continuous IV infusion over 24 hours or in divided doses by rapid injection for 5 to 10 days. This course may be repeated approximately every 2 weeks.For refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and acute myeloid leukemia:2 to 3 g/m2 IV every twelve hours for up to 12 doses The IV infusion generally takes place over 1 to 3 hours. The dose of cytarabine should be suspended or modified if the ANC is below 1000/mm3 or the platelet count is below 50,000/mm3.For chronic granulocytic leukemia / chronic myelogenous leukemia:20 mg/m2 subcutaneously for 10 days per month for 6 months with interferon alfa.

Usual Adult Dose for Acute Myeloid Leukemia:

Acute Leukemia Induction:100 to 200 mg/m2/day or 2 to 6 mg/kg/day as a continuous IV infusion over 24 hours or in divided doses by rapid injection for 5 to 10 days. This course may be repeated approximately every 2 weeks.For refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and acute myeloid leukemia:2 to 3 g/m2 IV every twelve hours for up to 12 doses The IV infusion generally takes place over 1 to 3 hours. The dose of cytarabine should be suspended or modified if the ANC is below 1000/mm3 or the platelet count is below 50,000/mm3.For chronic granulocytic leukemia / chronic myelogenous leukemia:20 mg/m2 subcutaneously for 10 days per month for 6 months with interferon alfa.

Usual Adult Dose for Leukemia:

Acute Leukemia Induction:100 to 200 mg/m2/day or 2 to 6 mg/kg/day as a continuous IV infusion over 24 hours or in divided doses by rapid injection for 5 to 10 days. This course may be repeated approximately every 2 weeks.For refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and acute myeloid leukemia:2 to 3 g/m2 IV every twelve hours for up to 12 doses The IV infusion generally takes place over 1 to 3 hours. The dose of cytarabine should be suspended or modified if the ANC is below 1000/mm3 or the platelet count is below 50,000/mm3.For chronic granulocytic leukemia / chronic myelogenous leukemia:20 mg/m2 subcutaneously for 10 days per month for 6 months with interferon alfa.

Usual Adult Dose for Meningeal Leukemia:

The manufacturer has stated that doses ranging from 5 mg/m2 to 75 mg/m2 has been used intrathecally and the frequency of administration has varied from once a day for 4 days to once every 4 days. The manufacturer has further stated that 30 mg/m2 every 4 days until cerebrospinal fluid findings were normal, followed by one additional treatment was the therapy most frequently used.Some clinicians today recommend 10 to 30 mg intrathecally up to 3 times a week.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Acute Nonlymphocytic Leukemia:

As a part of a combination chemotherapy:100 mg/m2/day by continuous IV infusion (days 1 to 7) or 100 mg/m2 IV every 12 hours (days 1 to 7) with an anthracycline.

Usual Pediatric Dose for non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma:

For refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and acute myeloid leukemia:1 to 3 g/m2 IV every twelve hours for up to 12 doses The IV infusion generally takes place over 1 to 3 hours. The dose of cytarabine should be suspended or modified if the ANC is below 1000/mm3 or the platelet count is below 50,000/mm3.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Acute Myeloid Leukemia:

For refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphomas and acute myeloid leukemia:1 to 3 g/m2 IV every twelve hours for up to 12 doses The IV infusion generally takes place over 1 to 3 hours. The dose of cytarabine should be suspended or modified if the ANC is below 1000/mm3 or the platelet count is below 50,000/mm3.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Meningeal Leukemia:

The manufacturer has stated that doses ranging from 5 mg/m2 to 75 mg/m2 has been used intrathecally and the frequency of administration has varied from once a day for 4 days to once every 4 days. The manufacturer has further stated that 30 mg/m2 every 4 days until cerebrospinal fluid findings were normal, followed by one additional treatment was the therapy most frequently used.However, some clinicians recommend the following age based dosing:<1 year: 20 mg1 to 2 years: 30 mg2 to 3 years: 50 mg>3 years: 70 to 75 mg

What other drugs will affect cytarabine?

Tell your doctor if you take digoxin (Lanoxin).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with cytarabine. 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 cytarabine.
  • 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: 2.02. Revision Date: 06/23/2009 11:24:38 AM.
  • cytarabine Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
  • Cytarabine Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Cytarabine Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Cytarabine MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)

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