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Other commonly used names are acridinyl anisidide; m-AMSA.
Amsacrine ( AM-sah-kreen) belongs to the general group of medicines known as antineoplastics. It is used to treat acute adult leukemia.
Amsacrine interferes with the growth of cancer cells, which are then eventually destroyed by the body. Since the growth of normal body cells may also be affected by amsacrine, other effects will also occur. Some of these may be serious and must be reported to your doctor. Other effects, like hair loss, may not be serious but may cause concern. Some effects may not occur until months or years after the medicine is used.
Before you begin treatment with amsacrine, you and your doctor should talk about the good this medicine will do as well as the risks of using it.
Amsacrine is to be administered only by or under the supervision of your doctor. It is available in the following dosage form:
Before Using This Medicine
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For amsacrine, the following should be considered:
Allergies- Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to amsacrine.
Pregnancy- Studies on effects in pregnancy have not been done in either humans or animals.
Before receiving amsacrine make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or if you may become pregnant. It is best to use some kind of birth control while you are receiving amsacrine. Tell your doctor right away if you think you have become pregnant while receiving amsacrine.
Breast-feeding- Amsacrine is not recommended during breast-feeding, because it may cause unwanted effects in nursing babies.
Children- Studies on this medicine have been done only in adult patients, and there is no specific information comparing use of amsacrine in children with use in other age groups.
Older adults- Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of amsacrine in the elderly with use in other age groups.
Other medicines- Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving amsacrine, it is especially important that your health care professional know if you are taking any of the following:
Other medical problems- The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of amsacrine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
Proper Use of This Medicine
Amsacrine often causes nausea and vomiting. However, it is very important that you continue to receive the medication, even if you begin to feel ill. Ask your health care professional for ways to lessen these effects.
The dose of amsacrine will be different for different patients. The dose that is used may depend on a number of things, including what the medicine is being used for, the patient's body size, and whether or not other medicines are also being taken. If you are taking or receiving amsacrine at home, follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. If you have any questions about the proper dose of amsacrine, ask your doctor.
Precautions While Using This Medicine
It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly and to check for unwanted effects.
While you are being treated with amsacrine, and after you stop treatment with it, do not have any immunizations (vaccinations) without your doctor's approval . Amsacrine may lower your body's resistance, and there is a chance you might get the infection the immunization is meant to prevent. In addition, other persons living in your household should not take oral polio vaccine, since there is a chance they could pass the polio virus on to you. Also, avoid persons who have taken oral polio vaccine within the last several months. Do not get close to them, and do not stay in the same room with them for very long. If you cannot take these precautions, you should consider wearing a protective face mask that covers the nose and mouth.
Amsacrine can temporarily lower the number of white blood cells in your blood, increasing the chance of getting an infection. It can also lower the number of platelets, which are necessary for proper blood clotting. If this occurs, there are certain precautions you can take, especially when your blood count is low, to reduce the risk of infection or bleeding:
If amsacrine accidentally leaks out of the vein into which it is injected, it may damage some tissues and cause scarring. Tell the doctor or nurse right away if you notice redness, pain, or swelling at the place of injection .
Side Effects of This Medicine
Side Effects of This Medicine
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Other side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. However, check with your doctor if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome.
This medicine often causes a temporary loss of hair. After treatment with amsacrine has ended, normal hair growth should return.
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT