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All about: Leukine

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Generic Name: Sargramostim (sar-GRAM-oh-stim)
Brand Name: Leukine

Leukine is used for:

Reducing severe, life-threatening, or fatal infections after chemotherapy for acute myelogenous leukemia (AML). It is also used to help increase the success of autologous bone marrow transplant and to help increase survival in patients who have bone marrow transplant failure. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Leukine is a hematopoietic agent. It works by stimulating production of white blood cells in bone marrow.

Do NOT use Leukine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Leukine or to yeast products
  • you have certain bone marrow disorders
  • you have received chemotherapy or radiation therapy within the last 24 hours or you will be receiving chemotherapy or radiation therapy within the next 24 hours

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Leukine :

Some medical conditions may interact with Leukine . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have other types of cancer or unusual growths or tumors
  • if you have a history of fluid retention, irregular heartbeat, heart disease or congestive heart failure, a lung disorder or breathing problems, or liver or kidney problems
  • if you are undergoing radiation therapy or chemotherapy

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Leukine . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Corticosteroids (eg, prednisone) or lithium because the side effects of Leukine may be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Leukine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Leukine :

Use Leukine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Leukine is usually administered as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. If you are using Leukine at home, carefully follow the injection procedures taught to you by your health care provider.
  • Do not shake Leukine .
  • If Leukine contains particles or is discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged in any way, do not use it.
  • Continue using Leukine for the full course of treatment unless your doctor directs otherwise.
  • Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and away from pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Dispose of properly after use. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain local regulations for proper disposal.
  • If you miss a dose of Leukine , contact your doctor immediately.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Leukine .

Important safety information:

  • The first dose of Leukine may cause difficulty breathing, flushing, fainting, or irregular heartbeat. These signs usually resolve and do not occur again. Contact your doctor for more information.
  • Lab tests, including liver function, kidney function, blood counts, body weight, and fluid and electrolyte tests, may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Leukine may contain benzyl alcohol, a preservative. Do not use medicine containing benzyl alcohol in NEWBORNS or INFANTS because serious and sometimes fatal nervous system problems and other side effects may occur.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant while taking Leukine , discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Leukine during pregnancy. It is unknown if Leukine is excreted in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you are using Leukine , check with your doctor or pharmacist to discuss the risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of Leukine :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Bone or joint pain; diarrhea; fever; general feeling of discomfort; loss of appetite; nausea; vomiting; weakness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); black or tarry stools; blood in vomit; chest pain; emotional or mood changes; shortness of breath; stomach pain; unusual swelling.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org/findyour.htm), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include chills; fast heartbeat; fever; general feeling of discomfort; headache; nausea; rash; shortness of breath.

Proper storage of Leukine :

Leukine is usually handled and stored by a health care provider. If you are using Leukine at home, store Leukine as directed by your pharmacist or health care provider. Keep Leukine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Leukine , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Leukine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Leukine . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Issue Date: September 5, 2007
Database Edition
Copyright © 2007 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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