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Cyclophosphamide Injection

Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Immune Suppressant Cancer-related

Cyclophosphamide Injection - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Cyclophosphamide Injection cause?

Side effects may occur when taking Cyclophosphamide, but the majority of these effects tend to resolve spontaneously. Common side effects include:

  • Nausea and vomiting (can be controlled with anti-nausea medicines)
  • Hair loss (reversible once the medicine is stopped)
  • Loss of appetite or weight
  • Feeling tired or weakness
  • Darkened skin colour
  • Change in colour or growth of finger or toe nails

Consult your doctor or pharmacist about any symptoms that becomes bothersome.

Before taking Cyclophosphamide Injection, what precautions must I follow?

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Cyclophosphamide Injection?

​Avoid raw (e.g. sashimi) or half-cooked foods (e.g. half-boiled eggs) to prevent food poisoning.

Cyclophosphamide Injection - Additional Information

What are the special precautions while taking the medicine?

STOP taking Cyclophosphamide and let your doctor know if you develop an allergic reaction. Rash due to allergic reaction to Cyclophosphamide is rare. Possible symptoms of allergic reaction are:

  • rash, hives, or itching
  • red, swollen, blistered or peeling skin with or without fever
  • wheezing or tightness in the chest or throat
  • trouble breathing or talking
  • unusual hoarseness
  • swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue or throat

Cyclophosphamide may increase risk of developing certain kinds of infections due to reduced white blood cells (a key component of the body's immune system that helps to fight infections). Tell your doctor immediately if you experience any symptoms of infection such as temperature exceeding 38°C, chills, cough, painful or bloody urination, feeling very tired or weak.

Although rare, Cyclophosphamide may increase the risk of developing certain kinds of cancers, such as bladder cancer. The risk is higher with long term use and higher cumulative doses of Cyclophosphamide. Your doctor will perform periodic screening to manage the risk.

While having treatment with Cyclophosphamide, you must see your doctor as scheduled to monitor response to treatment and minimize any possible side effect.

Can I get PREGNANT or BREASTFEED?

Cyclophosphamide may cause infertility in both men and women. Although women taking Cyclophosphamide can stop having menses, some may experience early menopause, they can still become pregnant.

Both men and women of childbearing age must use a reliable method of contraception to avoid the risk of an unplanned pregnancy as Cyclophosphamide can cause serious defects to unborn child. You should not plan to have children while taking Cyclophosphamide or for a while after treatment.

Cyclophosphamide passes into human breast milk and may cause serious unwanted effects to the child. You should not breastfeed if you are taking Cyclophosphamide.

In SUMMARY… what you need to know about Cyclophosphamide?

Cyclophosphamide Injection is given at the hospital every 1-2 week or every month. A higher dose may be prescribed compared to the oral dose of 50 milligrams to 150 milligrams so as to achieve faster control in more sever condition.

 If you missed an appointment, schdule another appointment as soon as possible and inform your doctor that you have missed your injection.

Patient can experience side effects such as nausea and vomitting, hair loss, loss of appetite or weight, feeling tired or weakness, darkened skin colour and change in colour or growth of finger or toe nails. All these effects then to resolve spontaneously.

 

  • Updated on Wednesday, March 15, 2017
  • Article contributed by Department of Pharmacy National Cancer Centre Singapore

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