MERCAPTOPURINE, 6-MP (mer kap toe PYOOR een) is a chemotherapy drug. It interferes with the growth of cancer cells and can reduce immune system activity. It is used to treat certain types of acute leukemia.
Take this medicine by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Shake well before using. Use the special measuring syringe that comes with this medication to measure your dose. Household spoons are not accurate. Refer to the Instructions for Use that come with your medication packaging. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take it more often than directed. Do not stop taking except on your doctor's advice.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this drug may be prescribed for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
low blood counts - this medicine may decrease the number of white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets. You may be at increased risk for infections and bleeding
signs of decreased platelets or bleeding - bruising, pinpoint red spots on the skin, black, tarry stools, blood in the urine
signs of decreased red blood cells - unusually weak or tired, feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
signs of infection - fever or chills, cough, sore throat, pain or difficulty passing urine
signs and symptoms of liver injury like dark yellow or brown urine; general ill feeling or flu-like symptoms; light-colored stools; loss of appetite; nausea; right upper belly pain; unusually weak or tired; yellowing of the eyes or skin
signs and symptoms of low blood sugar such as feeling anxious; confusion; dizziness; increased hunger; unusually weak or tired; sweating; shakiness; cold; irritable; headache; blurred vision; fast heartbeat; loss of consciousness
swelling of the stomach
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
This medicine may interact with the following medications:
certain medicines that treat or prevent blood clots like warfarin
certain medicines that treat ulcerative colitis like balsalazide, olsalazine, mesalamine, or sulfasalazine
live virus vaccines
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Store between 15 and 25 degrees C (59 and 77 degrees F). Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medicine after 8 weeks.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
low blood counts like low white cell, platelet, or red cell counts
nucleotide diphosphatase (NUDT15) deficiency
recently received or scheduled to receive a vaccine
thiopurine methyltransferase (TPMT) deficiency
an unusual or allergic reaction to mercaptopurine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
pregnant or trying to get pregnant
This drug may make you feel generally unwell. This is not uncommon, as chemotherapy can affect healthy cells as well as cancer cells. Report any side effects. Continue your course of treatment even though you feel ill unless your doctor tells you to stop.
This medicine may increase your risk to bruise or bleed. Call your doctor or health care professional if you notice any unusual bleeding.
Call your doctor or health care professional for advice if you get a fever, chills or sore throat, or other symptoms of a cold or flu. Do not treat yourself. This drug decreases your body's ability to fight infections. Try to avoid being around people who are sick.
This medicine can make you more sensitive to the sun. Keep out of the sun. If you cannot avoid being in the sun, wear protective clothing and use sunscreen. Do not use sun lamps or tanning beds/booths.
Talk to your doctor about your risk of cancer. You may be more at risk for certain types of cancers if you take this medicine.
Do not become pregnant while taking this medicine. Women should inform their doctor if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information. Do not breast-feed an infant while taking this medicine.
This medicine has caused reduced sperm counts in some men. This may interfere with the ability to father a child. You should talk to your doctor or health care professional if you are concerned about your fertility.