Possible side effects from Mercaptopurine and their management are listed in the following table. Always inform the doctor if your child experiences any side effects, so that the necessary monitoring may be conducted. Seek immediate medical attention if side effects are serious and urgent (refer to “Management”).
White blood cells protect the body by fighting bacteria (germs) that cause infection.
When the number of white blood cells is low, your child will be
more susceptible to infections and may become very ill from these infections.
To help prevent infection:
Seek medical help immediately if your child experiences any of the following:
Low platelet counts
Platelets are important for blood clotting. With low platelets, your child may bruise or bleed (for e.g. gums or nose) more easily than usual.
Be safety conscious.
Brush teeth gently with a soft-bristled toothbrush.
Low red blood cell counts
Red blood cell transport oxygen to body cells. Your child may feel tired or lethargic if red blood cell is low.
Ensure child gets ample rest
Mild, transient changes to liver function may occur
Your doctor will monitor liver function using blood tests during therapy, and make adjustment to the therapy if necessary.
In the rare event that yellowing of skin and/ or eye(s), dark coloured urine, pale coloured stools, or pain in the upper stomach occurs, seek medical help immediately.
Mild skin rash, hyperpigmentation of skin may occur.
Avoid excessive exposure to sunlight. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing i.e. long-sleeved tops.
Seek medical help immediately in case of persistent rash or allergic reaction: itchy rash, blistered, peeling skin, swelling in face/ lips/ tongue/ throat, tightness in chest or throat, trouble breathing.
Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite or diarrhea may rarely occur.
Hair loss may rarely occur.
Use gentle shampoo and soft hairbrush.