Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Cytosar-U inj

Important Note

Warnings
Uses
Side Effects
Precautions
Interactions
Overdose
Cytosar-U inj Warnings

This medication may cause serious (rarely fatal) blood disorders (bone marrow suppression leading to anemia, low number of white blood cells and platelets). Liver problems may also occur. Your doctor will monitor you closely for these side effects.

Tell your doctor immediately if you develop any signs of infection (e.g., fever, chills, persistent sore throat), unusual fatigue, easy bruising or bleeding, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach/abdominal pain, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, or mouth sores.

Cytosar-U inj Uses

Cytarabine is used alone or with other medications to treat various types of cancer. It is a chemotherapy drug that works by slowing or stopping cancer cell growth.

How to use Cytosar-U inj

This medication is usually given by injection into a vein by a health care professional. It may also be given by other methods of injection depending upon your medical condition. The dosage is based on your medical condition, body size, and response to therapy.

Unless your doctor instructs you otherwise, drink plenty of fluids while using this medication. This helps your kidneys remove the drug from your body and may help you avoid some of the side effects.

Cytosar-U inj Side Effects

See also the Warning section.

Nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea, headache, dizziness, and pain/swelling/redness at the injection site may occur. Nausea and vomiting can be severe. In some cases, drug therapy may be needed to prevent or relieve nausea and vomiting. Not eating before your treatment may help relieve vomiting. Changes in diet such as eating several small meals or limiting activity may help lessen some of these effects. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Temporary hair loss may occur. Normal hair growth should return after treatment has ended.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: fever with body aches, muscle/bone pain, chest pain, eye redness/itching/pain, painful/difficult swallowing, anal sores, change in the amount of urine, painful/difficult urination, joint/side/back pain, pain/redness/swelling of the arms/legs/feet, numbness or tingling of hands/feet, freckling, big toe pain, trouble breathing, black/bloody stools, blood in the urine, vomit that looks like coffee grounds, vision problems (including blindness), mental/mood changes (e.g., confusion), unexplained drowsiness, unconsciousness, enlarged abdomen, trouble walking, muscle weakness, loss of coordination, inability to move (paralysis), seizures.

This medication can lower the body's ability to fight an infection. Notify your doctor promptly if you develop any signs of an infection such as fever, chills, unusual cough, or persistent sore throat.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but get medical help right away if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include: 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.

Cytosar-U inj 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.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: decreased bone marrow function/blood cell disorders (e.g., anemia, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia), liver disease, kidney disease, gout.

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

Use caution with sharp objects like safety razors or nail cutters, and avoid activities such as contact sports to lower the chance of getting cut, bruised or injured.

Wash your hands well to prevent the spread of infections.

This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.

This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby, especially in the first 3 months of pregnancy. Consult your doctor for more details and to discuss reliable forms of birth control. It is recommended that men and women use two effective forms of birth control (e.g., condoms, birth control pills) while taking this medication and for some period afterwards.

It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Because of the potential risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Cytosar-U inj 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, flucytosine, gentamicin.

Cytosar-U inj 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. Symptoms of overdose may include confusion, mental/mood changes.

NOTES:

Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., complete blood counts, liver/kidney function tests) should be performed 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.

Be the first to share your experience with this drug.

Review this Treatment

Find a Drug:

by name or medical condition or shape/color (Pill Identifier)

(for example: aspirin)

(for example: diabetes)

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
 
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

Ask the pharmacist

Questions about medications? Get expert answers by video or live chat about allergies, pregnancy, sleep, and more.
See the Ask the Pharmacist event schedule.

Ask a Question

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

tea
What you should eat.
Woman sitting in front of UV lights
Is yours working?
woman using breath spray
What's causing yours?
colon xray
Get the facts.
MS Overview
Recognizing symptoms.
bowl of yogurt with heart shape
Eat for a healthy heart.
woman doing pushups
To help you get fit.
Colored x-ray of tooth decay
Know what to look for.
Woman sitting with child
Do you know the symptoms?
fruit drinks
Foods that can help you focus.
Sad dog and guacamole
Don't feed this to your dog.
Thyroid exam
See how much you know.

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.

WebMD the app

Get trusted health information. Whenever. Wherever... with your iPhone, iPad or Android.

Find Out More

IMPORTANT: About This Section and Other User-Generated Content on WebMD

The opinions expressed in WebMD User-generated content areas like communities, reviews, ratings, or blogs are solely those of the User, who may or may not have medical or scientific training. These opinions do not represent the opinions of WebMD. User-generated content areas are not reviewed by a WebMD physician or any member of the WebMD editorial staff for accuracy, balance, objectivity, or any other reason except for compliance with our Terms and Conditions. Some of these opinions may contain information about treatment or uses of drug products that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. WebMD does not endorse any specific product, service, or treatment.

Do not consider WebMD User-generated content as medical advice. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your care plan or treatment. WebMD understands that reading individual, real-life experiences can be a helpful resource but it is never a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified health care provider. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or dial 911 immediately.