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All about: Chlorambucil

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Generic Name: Chlorambucil (klor-AM-byoo-sill)
Brand Name: Leukeran

Chlorambucil can cause suppressed bone marrow function, other cancers, birth defects, and infertility.


Chlorambucil is used for:

Treating certain cancers. It may also be used to treat other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Chlorambucil is an alkylating agent. It works by binding to the RNA or DNA of certain cancer cells, which helps to slow down their growth and reproduction.

Do NOT use Chlorambucil if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Chlorambucil
  • you are in the first trimester of pregnancy

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

Before using Chlorambucil :

Some medical conditions may interact with Chlorambucil . 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 substance
  • if you are receiving or have recently completed radiation therapy, suffer from bone marrow depression, have decreased white blood counts or decreased blood platelets, an infection, shingles, chickenpox, or the blood disease porphyria
  • if you have had an allergic reaction to any other alkylating agent (eg, cyclophosphamide)
  • if you have kidney disease, or a history of seizures or head trauma

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Chlorambucil . However, no specific interactions with Chlorambucil are known at this time.

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Chlorambucil 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 Chlorambucil :

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

  • Chlorambucil may be taken with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
  • Chlorambucil works best if it is taken at the same time each day.
  • Drinking extra fluids while you are taking Chlorambucil is recommended.
  • If you miss a dose of Chlorambucil and take 1 dose daily, take the missed dose if you remember the same day. Skip the dose if you do not remember until the next day. Do not take 2 doses at once.

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

Important safety information:

  • Chlorambucil may cause drowsiness. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to Chlorambucil . Using Chlorambucil alone, with certain other medicines, or with alcohol may lessen your ability to drive or to perform other potentially dangerous tasks.
  • If nausea, vomiting, or loss of appetite occurs, ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist for ways to lessen these effects.
  • Chlorambucil may reduce the number of blood cells that are needed for clotting. To prevent bleeding, avoid situations where bruising or injury may occur.
  • Chlorambucil may lower your body's ability to fight infection. To prevent infection, avoid contact with people who have colds or other infections. Do not touch your eyes or the inside of your nose unless you have thoroughly washed you hands first.
  • The use of birth control is recommended while you are taking Chlorambucil .
  • Check with your doctor before having immunizations (vaccinations) while you are using Chlorambucil .
  • LAB TESTS, such as complete blood counts, may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use Chlorambucil with caution in CHILDREN with kidney disease. They may have an increased risk of seizures.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Chlorambucil has been shown to cause harm to the fetus. Avoid becoming pregnant while taking Chlorambucil . If you become pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Chlorambucil during pregnancy. It is unknown if Chlorambucil is excreted in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Chlorambucil .

Possible side effects of Chlorambucil :

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:

Agitation; clumsiness; confusion; diarrhea; tingling or numbness in the hands and feet; tiredness; tremors; twitching.

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); absence of monthly period; chills; congestion; excessive tiredness; fever; hallucinations; hip, stomach, or joint pain; infertility; nausea; persistent cough; seizures; shortness of breath or difficulty breathing; sore throat; sores in the mouth or on the lips; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual lumps or masses; vomiting; yellowing of the skin or eyes.

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 agitation; dizziness; impaired coordination; seizures.

Proper storage of Chlorambucil :

Store Chlorambucil in the refrigerator, between 36 and 46 degrees F (2 and 8 degrees C). Keep Chlorambucil out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Chlorambucil , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Chlorambucil 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 Chlorambucil . 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 07.3.1.003
Copyright © 2007 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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