Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up
Drugs & Medications

DepoCyt (PF) intrathecal

WARNINGS:

This medication sometimes causes an inflammation of the brain (arachnoiditis), which may rarely be fatal. Before your treatment with this medication, your doctor will direct you to take another drug (dexamethasone) to help prevent this side effect or to make it less serious if it does occur. Follow your doctor's directions carefully. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these side effects occur: nausea, vomiting, headache, neck pain/stiffness, back pain, fever.

Who should not take DepoCyt (PF) intrathecal?
See More

Uses

Cytarabine liposome is a long-acting (sustained-release) chemotherapy drug used to treat cancer in the area around the spinal cord (lymphomatous meningitis). It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells.

How to use DepoCyt (PF) intrathecal

This medication is given by injection into the spinal fluid over 1 to 5 minutes by a health care professional. It is usually given every 14 days or as directed by your doctor.

After receiving this medication, you will be instructed to lie flat for 1 hour.

The dosage and length of treatment depends on your medical condition and response to treatment. After several months, your doctor may only give this drug every 28 days (maintenance dose).

To reduce the risk of serious side effects, your doctor will give you other medication(s) such as dexamethasone before and for several days following your treatment. It is very important that you use this medication as directed. Tell you doctor immediately if you cannot take the dexamethasone (e.g., because of vomiting), if you vomit just after taking dexamethasone, or if you miss a dose.

Side Effects

Nausea, vomiting, or fever may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor promptly.

Many people using this medication have serious side effects. However, your doctor has prescribed this drug because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: headache, tingling/numbness, muscle pain, back pain, neck pain/stiffness, seizures, swelling, loss of bladder/bowel control, unusual weakness/tiredness, easy bruising/bleeding, signs of infection (e.g., persistent sore throat), mental/mood changes (e.g., confusion).

Get medical help right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: weakness/loss of movement on one side of the body, vision changes (including blindness), hearing changes.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Precautions

Before using cytarabine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: brain infection (e.g., bacterial/fungal/viral meningitis).

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: previous chemotherapy, previous radiation therapy.

Do not have immunizations/vaccinations without the consent of your doctor, and avoid contact with people who have recently received oral polio vaccine or flu vaccine inhaled through the nose.

Wash your hands well to prevent the spread of infections. Avoid contact with people who have illnesses that may spread to others (e.g., flu, chickenpox).

To lower your chance of getting cut, bruised, or injured, use caution with sharp objects like razors and nail cutters, and avoid activities such as contact sports.

This drug is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm the unborn baby. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor immediately.

It is not known whether this medication passes into breast milk. However, it may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Therefore, breast-feeding while using this medication is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.

Some products that may interact with this drug include: digoxin, other cancer chemotherapy drugs.

This product can affect the results of certain lab tests (e.g., white blood cell counts in CSF), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.

Notes

Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., complete blood count) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.

Missed Dose

For the best possible benefit, it is important to receive each scheduled dose of this medication as directed. If you miss a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist immediately to establish a new dosing schedule.

Storage

Consult the product instructions and your pharmacist for storage details. Keep all medications away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.

MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For information about enrolling in MedicAlert, call 1-888-633-4298 (US) or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).

Information last revised March 2013. Copyright(c) 2013 First Databank, Inc.

Images

Sorry. No images are available for this medication.

Add to Cabinet

Add Adderall to my medicine cabinet.

Did you know?

With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.

Go to medicine cabinet

Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by First Databank, Inc. This copyrighted material has been downloaded from a licensed data provider and is not for distribution, expect as may be authorized by the applicable terms of use.

CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.

More about Drugs and Medications

Newsletters

Subscribe to free WebMD newsletters.

  • WebMD Daily

    WebMD Daily

    Subscribe to the WebMD Daily, and you'll get today's top health news and trending topics, and the latest and best information from WebMD.

  • Men's Health

    Men's Health

    Subscribe to the Men's Health newsletter for the latest on disease prevention, fitness, sex, nutrition, and more from WebMD.

  • Women's Health

    Women's Health

    Subscribe to the Women's Health newsletter for the latest on disease prevention, fitness, sex, diet, anti-aging, and more from WebMD.

By clicking Submit, I agree to the WebMD Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy

URAC: Accredited Health Web Site HONcode Seal AdChoices