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Drugs reference index «Adriamycin»


Generic Name: Doxorubicin (dox-oh-ROO-bi-sin)Brand Name: Adriamycin

Adriamycin is for intravenous (IV) use only. If Adriamycin accidentally leaks into surrounding tissue, the skin or muscle may be severely damaged. Notify your doctor immediately if redness, pain, or swelling at or around the injection site occur. Adriamycin may cause heart problems (eg, heart failure) or bone marrow suppression. Notify your doctor immediately if you develop an irregular heartbeat, trouble breathing, swelling of the hands or feet, easy bruising or bleeding, a dry cough, or signs of an infection (eg, fever, unusual tiredness, persistent sore throat). Heart problems may occur during therapy or sometimes months to years after receiving Adriamycin . The risk of developing heart problems varies depending on your dose and condition. The risk may be increased if you have a history of radiation therapy or if you are using cyclophosphamide. Tell your doctor if you have liver problems because your dose will have to be decreased. Your doctor will closely monitor you while you are using Adriamycin .

Adriamycin is used for:

Treating various types of cancer.

Adriamycin is an antineoplastic antibiotic. It works by killing cancer cells.

Do NOT use Adriamycin if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Adriamycin
  • you have bone marrow depression
  • you have decreased blood cell counts resulting from previous anticancer medicine or radiation treatment
  • you have previously received treatment with other anticancer medicines (eg, daunorubicin, idarubicin, another anthracycline or anthracene)

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Adriamycin :

Some medical conditions may interact with Adriamycin . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have heart or blood vessel disease or liver problems
  • if you have had radiation therapy

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Adriamycin . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Barbiturates (eg, phenobarbital) or streptozocin because the effectiveness of Adriamycin may be decreased
  • Calcium channel blockers (eg, verapamil), cyclophosphamide, cyclosporine, or paclitaxel because side effects, such as heart problems, may be increased
  • Other anticancer medicines (eg, daunorubicin, idarubicin, anthracyclines, anthracenes) because the risk of toxicity may be increased
  • Anticoagulants (eg, warfarin) or trastuzumab because the actions and side effects of these medicines may be increased
  • Carbamazepine, digoxin, hydantoins (eg, phenytoin), live vaccines, or valproic acid because the effectiveness may be decreased by Adriamycin

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Adriamycin may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Adriamycin :

Use Adriamycin as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Adriamycin is usually administered as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. If you are using Adriamycin at home, carefully follow the injection procedures taught to you by your health care provider.
  • If Adriamycin contains particles or is discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged in any way, do not use it.
  • Drinking extra fluids while you are taking Adriamycin is recommended. Check with your doctor for instructions.
  • If Adriamycin accidentally spills on your skin, wash it off immediately with soap and water.
  • Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and away from pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Dispose of properly after use. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain local regulations for proper disposal.
  • If you miss a dose of Adriamycin , contact your doctor immediately.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Adriamycin .

Important safety information:

  • Adriamycin may reduce the number of clot-forming cells (platelets) in your blood. To prevent bleeding, avoid situations in which bruising or injury may occur. Report any unusual bleeding, bruising, blood in stools, or dark, tarry stools to your doctor.
  • Adriamycin may lower your body's ability to fight infection. Prevent infection by avoiding contact with people with colds or other infections. Notify your doctor of any signs of infection, including fever, sore throat, rash, or chills.
  • Caregivers of children should take precautions (eg, wear latex gloves) to prevent contact with the patient's urine and other body fluids for at least 5 days after treatment.
  • Avoid vaccinations with live virus vaccines (eg, measles, mumps, oral polio) while you are taking Adriamycin . Vaccinations may be less effective.
  • Adriamycin may cause the urine to turn red. This is harmless and usually goes away 1 to 2 days after receiving a dose of Adriamycin .
  • LAB TESTS, including liver function, complete blood cell counts, and heart function, may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use Adriamycin with extreme caution in CHILDREN. Safety and effectiveness have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Adriamycin has been shown to cause harm to the fetus. If you become pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Adriamycin during pregnancy. Adriamycin is excreted in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Adriamycin .

Possible side effects of Adriamycin :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Diarrhea; hair loss; loss of appetite; nausea; red-colored urine 1 to 2 days after receiving Adriamycin ; tiredness; vomiting; weakness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest or back pain; fainting; fast heartbeat; headache; loose or bloody stools; pain, redness, or swelling at the injection site; rectal bleeding or irritation; redness, pain, swelling, peeling, tingling, or blistering of the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet; serious infection (eg, fever, chills, cough, sore throat); shortness of breath; sores in the mouth or on the lips; sudden irregular heartbeat; sudden weight gain; swelling of the ankles; tightness in the chest and throat; unusual bruising or bleeding.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include inflammation of the mouth.

Proper storage of Adriamycin :

Adriamycin is usually handled and stored by a health care provider. If you are using Adriamycin at home, store Adriamycin as directed by your pharmacist or health care provider. Keep Adriamycin out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Adriamycin , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Adriamycin is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Adriamycin . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

  • Adriamycin Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
  • Adriamycin Concise Consumer Information (Cerner Multum)
  • Doxorubicin Prescribing Information (FDA)

See Also...

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