Vincristine sulfate liposome injection

Posted on August 23rd, 2012 by

Class: Chemotherapy
Generic Name: Vincristine sulfate liposome injection
Trade Name: Marqibo®

How is this drug used? Marqibo is used for the treatment of adults withPhiladelphia chromosome-negative (Ph-) acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) who have relapsed at least twice or whose leukemia has worsened (progressed) after two or more treatment regimens.

What is the mechanism of action? Marqibo contains the chemotherapy drug vincristine, which interferes with the ability of cancer cells to divide. The vincristine is encased in material (a liposome) that helps to deliver the drug to cancer cells.

How is Marqibo given (administered)? Marqibo is given as an intravenous (into a vein) infusion.

How are patients monitored? Patients will usually have scheduled meetings with their healthcare provider while they are being treated with Marqibo.  Typically, blood will be drawn to check levels of blood cells and to monitor functions of some organ systems.  Patients may also undergo physical examinations, scans or other measures to assess side effects and response to therapy.

What are some of the common side effects of treatment with Marqibo?

  • Nausea
  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • Decreased appetite
  • Sleep problems

What are some of the potentially serious side effects of treatment with Marqibo?

  • Tissue injury (if the drug leaks out of the vein and into surrounding tissues)
  • Nerve problems (neuropathy)
  • Low blood cell counts
  • Tumor lysis syndrome (a condition caused by the fast breakdown of cancer cells; it may cause kidney or heart problems)
  • Constipation and intestinal blockage
  • Severe fatigue
  • Liver problems

This is not a complete list of side effects. Some patients may experience other side effects that are not listed here. Patients may wish to discuss with their physician the other less common side effects of this drug, some of which may be serious.

Some side effects may require medical attention. Other side effects do not require medical attention and may go away during treatment. Patients should check with their physician about any side effects that continue or are bothersome.

What can patients do to help alleviate or prevent discomfort and side effects?

  • Pay careful attention to the physician’s instructions and inform the physician of any side effects.
  • Maintain adequate rest and nutrition.
  • If possible, avoid large crowds or people who are sick or not feeling well, as this drug may leave some patients susceptible to infection.
  • Wash hands often to reduce the risk of infection.
  • Eat small meals frequently to help alleviate nausea.
  • Avoid activities that may cause injury or bruising.
  • Use a soft toothbrush and an electric razor to prevent cuts on the mouth or skin.

Are there any special precautions patients should be aware of before starting treatment?

  • Patients should inform their physician of any other medication they are taking (whether prescription or over-the-counter, including vitamins, herbs, etc.) as they may interact with treatment.
  • Patients should inform their physician about any past treatment with vincristine.
  • Patients should inform their physician if they are pregnant, breastfeeding or planning a family in the near future.
  • Patients should inform their physician about all medical conditions, including liver problems; conditions that involve the brain or spinal cord; numbness or tingling in the hands or feet; decreased sensitivity to heat, cold, or pain; bowel or urinary problems; head or jaw pain; or difficulty walking or picking up and holding items.
  • Patients should inform their physician about prior allergic reactions.

When should patients notify their physician?

Tell your doctor if you experience any side effects that bother you or don’t go away. Also tell your doctor if you have signs of tissue injury (such as burning, redness, or swelling at the IV site during or after the infusion); signs of nerve problems (such as numbness, tingling, burning, weakness, or changes in sensation in the hands or feet; pain in the joints and muscles, jaw, or head; muscle spasms; dizziness; unsteadiness; difficulty picking up or holding items; difficulty speaking; changes in how you walk; constipation; difficulty with urination; or difficulty with erections or ejaculations); signs of infection (such as fever or a productive cough); signs of bowel problems (such as abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting); or severe fatigue.

What is a package insert?
A package insert is required by the FDA and contains a summary of the essential scientific information needed for the safe and effective use of the drug for healthcare providers and consumers.  A package insert typically includes information regarding specific indications, administration schedules, dosing, side effects, contraindications, results from some clinical trials, chemical structure, pharmacokinetics and metabolism of the specific drug. By carefully reviewing the package insert, you will get the most complete and current information about how to safely use this drug. If you do not have the package insert for the drug you are using, your pharmacist or physician may be able to provide you with a copy.

Copyright © 2016 CancerConnect Last updated 08/12.

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Tags: Chemotherapy, V

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