vincristine IV Warnings
This drug is to be given only into a vein (IV). It must not be injected into the spine. Fatal reactions occur if vincristine is injected into the spine.
If vincristine leaks out of the vein into the surrounding area, it may cause serious skin and tissue damage. Tell your health care professional immediately if you experience pain, irritation, redness, or swelling at the injection site. Prompt treatment of the leakage will help reduce discomfort and possible skin damage.
vincristine IV Uses
See also Warning section.
This medication is given by injection only into a vein by a health care professional. It is given on a schedule usually at weekly intervals or as directed by your doctor. The dosage is based on your medical condition, body size, and response to treatment. In small children, dosage is also based on weight.
Unless your doctor instructs you otherwise, drink plenty of fluids while using this medication. This helps to reduce some of the side effects to the kidneys.
vincristine IV Side Effects
See also Warning section.
Nausea, vomiting, weight loss, diarrhea, bloating, stomach/abdominal pain or cramps, mouth sores, dizziness, or headache may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Vincristine may also affect the nerves in the intestines, causing gut movement to slow down. This effect can result in constipation, which in some cases may become serious. Consult your doctor or pharmacist about how you can prevent constipation (e.g., maintain a diet adequate in fiber, drink plenty of water, exercise, choose the right type of laxative with a stool softener, avoid bulk-forming laxatives). Tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly if you develop constipation.
Temporary hair loss may occur. Normal hair growth should return after treatment has ended.
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. Careful monitoring by your doctor may decrease your risk.
This medication commonly affects the nerves and muscles in your body. Most of these side effects go away after this medication is stopped, however some effects may persist for a long time. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these serious side effects occur: painful/difficult urination, change in the amount of urine, pain (e.g., in the joints, back, muscles, jaw), numbness/tingling/pain of the arms/legs, weakness, difficulty walking, loss of coordination/balance, inability to move your muscles (e.g., muscles of the face, other parts of your body), drooping eyelids, hoarseness, trouble speaking, mental/mood changes (e.g., depression, hallucinations, confusion).
This medication can lower the body's ability to fight an infection. Tell your doctor promptly if you develop any signs of an infection such as fever, chills, or persistent sore throat.
Trouble breathing may infrequently occur with vincristine treatment, especially when it is given with another chemotherapy drug, mitomycin-C. Patients with lung problems may be more sensitive to this side effect. Long-term treatment of this side effect may be required if it worsens. This effect may occur within minutes to several hours after vincristine is given and up to 2 weeks after the dose of mitomycin-C. Get medical help right away if you have shortness of breath or coughing. If you have this reaction, you should not receive vincristine again.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: 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.
vincristine IV Precautions
Before using vincristine, 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: a certain type of nerve/muscle disease (demyelinating form of Charcot-Marie-Tooth syndrome), radiation treatment to the liver.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: other nerve/muscle problems (neuromuscular disease, neuropathy), liver disease, decreased bone marrow function, blood disorders, current infections.
This drug may make you dizzy. 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.
Since this medication can increase your risk of developing serious infections, 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 the chance of getting cut, bruised, or injured, use caution with sharp objects like safety razors and nail cutters, and avoid activities such as contact sports.
Children may be more sensitive to the effects of this drug, especially slowed movement of the gut that may cause vomiting and constipation.
Elderly patients who also take drugs that may cause difficult urination as a side effect may be more sensitive to the effects of this drug on the kidneys (urinary retention). Consult your doctor for more details. See also Drug Interactions.
This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby. Consult your doctor for more details and to discuss reliable forms of birth control. It is recommended that men and women use 2 effective forms of birth control (e.g., condoms, birth control pills) while using this medication and for some time afterwards. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor immediately.
It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Because of the possible risk to the infant, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
vincristine IV 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, phenytoin, drugs that may cause nerve damage to the ear (e.g., chemotherapy drugs that contain platinum), drugs affecting liver enzymes that remove vincristine from your body (such as aprepitant, cimetidine, St. John's wort, azole antifungals including itraconazole, macrolide antibiotics including erythromycin, rifamycins including rifabutin, certain anti-seizure medicines including carbamazepine), drugs that may cause difficult urination (e.g., belladonna alkaloids, anticholinergic drugs such as atropine, antispasmodics such as dicyclomine, drugs to treat an overactive bladder such as oxybutynin).
vincristine IV 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, uric acid blood levels) 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.