FLUDARABINE (floo DARE a been) is a chemotherapy drug. It interferes with the growth of cancer cells. It is usually used to treat chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).
Take this medicine by mouth with a full glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Do not cut, crush or chew this medicine.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
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
changes in hearing
changes in vision
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.
pain, tingling, numbness in the hands or feet
signs of decreased platelets or bleeding - bruising, pinpoint red spots on the skin, black, tarry stools, nosebleeds
signs of decreased red blood cells - unusually weak or tired, fainting spells, lightheadedness
signs of infection - fever or chills, cough, sore throat, pain or difficulty passing urine
swelling of the ankles, feet, hands
trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
yellowing of the eyes or skin
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
loss of appetite
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
This medicine may also interact with the following medications:
medicines to increase blood counts like filgrastim, pegfilgrastim, sargramostim
Talk to your doctor or health care professional before taking any of these medicines:
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 at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
infection (especially virus infection such as chickenpox or cold sores)
low blood counts like low platelets, red blood cells, white blood cells
an unusual or allergic reaction to fludarabine, other chemotherapy, 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.
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 may increase your risk to bruise or bleed. Call your doctor or health care professional if you notice any unusual bleeding.
Be careful brushing and flossing your teeth or using a toothpick because you may get an infection or bleed more easily. If you have any dental work done, tell your dentist you are receiving this medicine.
Avoid taking products that contain aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen, or ketoprofen unless instructed by your doctor. These medicines may hide a fever.
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.
Men should inform their doctors if they wish to father a child. This medicine may lower sperm counts.