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All about: Cerubidine

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Generic Name: daunorubicin (daw no RUE bih sin)
Brand Names: Cerubidine

What is Cerubidine (daunorubicin)?

Daunorubicin is a cancer (antineoplastic) medication. Daunorubicin interferes with the growth of cancer cells and slows their growth and spread in the body.

Daunorubicin is used in the treatment of leukemia (blood cancer).

Daunorubicin may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about Cerubidine (daunorubicin)?

Daunorubicin should only be administered under the supervision of a qualified healthcare provider experienced in the use of cancer chemotherapeutic agents.

Serious side effects have been reported with the use of daunorubicin including: allergic reactions (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives); severe heart damage with prolonged use; decreased bone marrow function and blood problems (extreme fatigue; easy bruising or bleeding; black, bloody or tarry stools; fever or chills; or signs of infection); severe nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite; and others. Talk to your doctor about the possible side effects from treatment with daunorubicin.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using Cerubidine (daunorubicin)?

Do not use daunorubicin without first talking to your doctor if you have
  • kidney disease;
  • liver disease;
  • heart disease;

  • poor bone marrow function;

  • received radiation therapy that encompassed the heart; or

  • previously received treatment with doxorubicin (Adriamycin, Rubex), doxorubicin liposomal (Doxil), daunorubicin (Cerubidine), daunorubicin liposomal (DaunoXome), idarubicin (Idamycin), or mitoxantrone (Novantrone).

The use of daunorubicin may be dangerous if you have any of the conditions listed above.

Daunorubicin is in the FDA pregnancy category D. This means that daunorubicin is known to be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not use daunorubicin without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant. Discuss with your doctor the appropriate use of birth control during treatment with daunorubicin if necessary. Daunorubicin passes into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Breast-feeding should be avoided during treatment with daunorubicin. Children have an increased risk of heart problems due to treatment with daunorubicin. Growth and gonadal development may also be affected.

How should I use Cerubidine (daunorubicin)?

Daunorubicin should only be administered under the supervision of a qualified healthcare provider experienced in the use of cancer chemotherapeutic agents.

Your doctor will determine the correct amount and frequency of treatment with daunorubicin depending upon the type of cancer being treated and other factors. Talk to your doctor if you have any questions or concerns regarding the treatment schedule.

Your doctor will probably want you to have regularly scheduled blood tests and other medical evaluations during treatment with daunorubicin to monitor progress and side effects.

Skin accidentally exposed to daunorubicin should be rinsed thoroughly with soap and warm water.

Your healthcare provider will store daunorubicin as directed by the manufacturer. If you are storing daunorubicin at home, follow the directions provided by your healthcare provider.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Contact your doctor if you miss a dose of daunorubicin.

What happens if I overdose?

If for any reason an overdose of daunorubicin is suspected, seek emergency medical attention or contact your healthcare provider immediately.

Symptoms of a daunorubicin overdose tend to be similar to side effects caused by the medication, although often more severe.

What should I avoid while using Cerubidine (daunorubicin)?

Daunorubicin can lower the activity of your immune system making you susceptible to infections. Avoid contact with people who have colds, the flu, or other contagious illnesses and do not receive vaccines that contain live strains of a virus (e.g., live oral polio vaccine) during treatment with daunorubicin. In addition, avoid contact with individuals who have recently been vaccinated with a live vaccine. There is a chance that the virus can be passed on to you.

Skin accidentally exposed to daunorubicin should be rinsed thoroughly with soap and warm water.

Cerubidine (daunorubicin) side effects

If you experience any of the following serious side effects from daunorubicin, contact your doctor immediately:

  • an allergic reaction (including difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);

  • decreased bone marrow function and blood problems (extreme fatigue; easy bruising or bleeding; black, bloody or tarry stools; or fever, chills, or signs of infection);

  • congestive heart failure (difficulty breathing, fluid retention, chest pain);

  • tissue or vein reactions near the site of administration;

  • liver damage (abdominal pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or loss of appetite;

  • inflamation or sores inside the mouth, throat, or intestines;

  • rash, itching, or hives;

  • fever, chills, or other signs of infection; or

  • increased levels of uric acid in the body (joint pain and stiffness).

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue taking daunorubicin and talk to your doctor if you experience:

  • temporary hair loss; or

  • red colored urine for 1 or 2 days following a dose.

Other side effects have also been reported. Discuss with your doctor any side effect that occurs during treatment with daunorubicin.

What other drugs will affect Cerubidine (daunorubicin)?

Do not use daunorubicin without first talking to your doctor if you have had previous treatment with doxorubicin (Adriamycin, Rubex), doxorubicin liposomal (Doxil), daunorubicin (Cerubidine), daunorubicin liposomal (DaunoXome), idarubicin (Idamycin), or mitoxantrone (Novantrone). Because there is a maximum amount of these medications that should be administered to an individual, you may not be able to use daunorubicin.

Before using daunorubicin, tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following drugs:

  • cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan, Cytoxan Lyophilized, Neosar); or

  • methotrexate (Folex PFS, Rheumatrex Dose Pack ).

You may not be able to take daunorubicin, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment if you are taking any of the medicines listed above.

Do not receive "live" vaccines during treatment with daunorubicin. Administration of a live vaccine may be dangerous during treatment with daunorubicin.

Drugs other than those listed here may also interact with daunorubicin. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any other prescription or over-the-counter medicines, including herbal products, during treatment with daunorubicin.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your healthcare provider may have additional information about daunorubicin that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Daunorubicin is available with a prescription under the brand name Cerubidine. Other brand or generic formulations may also be available. Ask your healthcare provider or 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: 2.04. Revision Date: 2/13/04 3:59:05 PM.

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