Fludarabine Phosphate is used to treat a type of cancer of white blood cells called chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). This is for people who have enough healthy cells remaining in their bone marrow. Regular blood tests are needed to monitor the levels of blood cells.
On most chemotherapy regimens, doses are administered in courses at various intervals. It is to allow normal cells to recover from the adverse effects of anticancer medicine between doses. However, throughout this period, cancer cells will also recover and start to replicate again. This medication helps you to slow or stop the growth and spread of the cancer cells.
Chronic lymphocytic leukemia is adisease characterized by an increased number of lymphocytes. In which this isone of the main types of white cells in the blood. Despite their increased number,these lymphocytes are functionally deficient and the immune system of theperson is compromised. Patients with this condition have an increased risk ofinfection and malignancy. Here are some symptoms of CLL:
- Bruising easily (often without having any fall orblow)
- Tiredness due to anemia
- Repeated infections
- Night sweats
- Weight loss
Fludarabine Phosphate is a type of medicine for cancer known as a cytotoxic antimetabolite. It kills the abnormal blood cells that cause the disease. This medication is supplied as tablets for oral administration. Each tablet contains Fludarabine Phosphate as an active ingredient. This is available in the dosage form of 10 mg tablet. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this medication.
How does Fludarabine Phosphate work?
Fludarabine Phosphate works by stoppingthe abnormal blood cells from multiplying. It does this by inhibiting theproduction of the cells genetic material, RNA, and DNA. Both RNA and DNA areneeded for growth and multiplication of cells. This drug causes a deficiency ofRNA and DNA in the cancerous cells. This causes them to grow in an unbalancedway. That it results in the death of the cells.
This medication can also affectnormal and healthy cells. It is particularly those that multiply quickly suchas healthy blood cells. Even though the aim of treating leukemia with FludarabinePhosphate is to kill the cancerous blood cells, the most important side effectis on the bone marrow. It is where blood cells are made. This drug also decreasesthe production of normal blood cells. Wherein, it can leave people susceptible toinfection.
The bone marrow creates cellscalled stem cells. These usually progress into different types of blood cells(white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets). In leukemia, the bonemarrow produces too many immature white blood cells. These abnormal cells takeup space in the bone marrow and result in less room for the production ofnormal healthy blood cells.
How to use Fludarabine Phosphate?
The recommended dosage will depend on your medical condition, age, and response to the treatment. You must take this medication exactly as it is prescribed. You should not take more or less or more often than it is given by your doctor. For the best benefit from this product, take it regularly. Do not stop taking this medication without the consent of your doctor. It may cause another complication or may worsen your current condition.
Fludarabine Phosphate is to be takenby mouth. It is usually taken once a day for 5 days in a row or as directed byyour doctor. This 5-day cycle may be repeated after 28 days, usually for up to6 cycles. You may take each dose with or without a meal. Swallow the drug as awhole with a full glass of water. Do not crush, break, or chew the tablets. Rememberto take it at the same time and in the same way each day. If you missed a dose,take it as soon as you remember it. If it is almost time for your next dose,skip the missed dose and follow your regular schedule. Inform your doctor ifyour condition gets worse or does not improve. Let your doctor know if your conditiondoes not improve.
What are the side effects of Fludarabine Phosphate?
Common side effects:
- Stomach pain
- Nausea or vomiting
- Pain or sores in the mouth or throat
- Muscle pain
- Loss of appetite
- Swelling in your legs
- Skin rash
- Sweating or mild itching
- Cold symptoms (stuffy or runny nose and sneezing)
Seek immediate medical attention if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur:
- Persistent cough
- Bloody, black, or tarry stools
- Chest pain
- Pain or difficulty breathing
If there are any signs of an allergic reaction occur, call your doctor right away:
- Severe dizziness
- Trouble breathing
- Itching or swelling especially of the throat,face, or tongue
If there are side effects thatpersist or get worse, call your doctor for instructions.
Warnings and Precautions
- Fludarabine Phosphate should be used with cautionin people aged 75 years, with decreased kidney and liver function.
- This is not prescribed for use in people with a conditioncalled hemolytic anemia. It is where there are decreased numbers of red bloodcells in the bloodstream.
- This is also not recommended for use in children andbreastfeeding women.
- Do not use this drug if you are allergic to it. Tellyour doctor if you have any allergies. This drug may contain an inactiveingredient that causes an allergic reaction.
- If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant,consult your doctor first before using. If you get pregnant while using thistreatment, call your doctor immediately.
- You should not share this or any of your prescriptionswith others even if they have the same symptoms as yours.
- Inform your doctor about the medical history that youhad. Tell also if you are taking current medications such as vitamins or herbalsupplements.
- Do not have vaccinations or immunizations withoutthe consent of your doctor while taking this drug.
- Keep this medication at room temperature far from heat,moisture, and far from the reach of children.