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All about: Cerezyme

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Generic Name: imiglucerase (im ih GLUE ker ase)
Brand Names: Cerezyme

What is imiglucerase?

Imiglucerase is a man-made form of the naturally-occurring protein beta-glucocerebrosidase. A deficiency of beta-glucocerebrosidase is called Gaucher disease.

Imiglucerase is used for the treatment of Type 1 Gaucher disease that results in one or more of the following: anemia (low level of red blood cells), thrombocytopenia (low level of platelets), bone disease, hepatomegaly (enlargement of the liver), or splenomegaly (enlargement of the spleen).

Imiglucerase may also be used for purposes other than those listed here.

What is the most important information I should know about imiglucerase?

Symptoms of allergic reactions including difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; hives; itching; flushing; and dizziness or fainting, have occurred with the use of imiglucerase. Approximately 15% of patients treated with imiglucerase develop antibodies to imiglucerase. Approximately 46% of patients with detectable antibodies have experienced an allergic reaction. Emergency medical attention may be required if an allergic reaction is experienced.

What should I discuss with my health care provider before using imiglucerase?

Before using imiglucerase, tell your doctor if you have

  • had an allergic reaction to imiglucerase, alglucerase (Ceredase), or have antibodies to either medication; or

  • breathing problems or pulmonary hypertension.

You may not be able to use imiglucerase, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment.

Imiglucerase is in the FDA pregnancy category C. This means that it is not known whether it will be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not use imiglucerase without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant or could become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether imiglucerase passes into breast milk. Do not use imiglucerase without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I use imiglucerase?

Use imiglucerase exactly as directed by your doctor. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.

Imiglucerase is given by intravenous (into the vein) injection and will most likely be administered by a healthcare provider.

Your doctor may want you to have blood tests or other medical evaluations during treatment with imiglucerase to monitor progress and side effects.

Your healthcare provider will store imiglucerase as instructed by the manufacturer. If you are storing imiglucerase at home, your healthcare provider will give you instructions regarding how to store the medication.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Contact your doctor if you miss a dose of imiglucerase.

What happens if I overdose?

Contact your doctor, a hospital emergency room, or a poison control center if an overdose is suspected.

Although symptoms of an imiglucerase overdose are not known, an overdose is unlikely to threaten life.

What should I avoid while taking imiglucerase?

There are no restrictions on food, beverages, or activity during treatment with imiglucerase.

Imiglucerase side effects

Symptoms of allergic reactions including difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; hives; itching; flushing; and dizziness or fainting, have occurred with the use of imiglucerase. Approximately 15% of patients treated with imiglucerase develop antibodies to imiglucerase. Approximately 46% of patients with detectable antibodies have experienced an allergic reaction. Emergency medical attention may be required if an allergic reaction is experienced.

Talk to your doctor if you experience any of the following less serious side effects:

  • discomfort, burning, itching, swelling, or abscess (open wound or sore) at the injection site;

  • nausea or vomiting;

  • abdominal pain;

  • diarrhea;

  • fatigue;

  • headache;

  • dizziness; or

  • rash.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect imiglucerase?

Imiglucerase is not expected to interact with other medications. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist before taking other prescription or over-the-counter medications, including herbal products, during treatment with imiglucerase.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has more information about imiglucerase written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Imiglucerase is available with a prescription under the brand name Cerezyme. Other brand or generic formulations may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 2.01. Revision Date: 11/3/04 9:19:02 AM.

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