Generic Name: chlorambucil (klor-AM-bue-sil)
Brand Name: Leukeran
Chlorambucil can suppress bone marrow function. Contact your doctor right away if you develop fever, chills, or persistent cough or sore throat; unusual bruising or bleeding; or unusual tiredness or weakness.
Chlorambucil can also cause other cancers, birth defects, and infertility. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
Chlorambucil is used for:
Treating certain cancers. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Chlorambucil is an alkylating agent. It works by stopping the growth of certain cancer cells.
Do NOT use chlorambucil if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in chlorambucil
- you have taken chlorambucil before and your cancer did not respond
- you are in the first trimester of pregnancy
- you have taken or will be taking palifermin within 24 hours of taking chlorambucil
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using chlorambucil:
Some medical conditions may interact with chlorambucil. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have had an allergic reaction to any other alkylating agent (eg, cyclophosphamide)
- if you are able to become pregnant
- if you have liver problems, bone marrow problems (eg, low white blood cell counts, low blood platelet levels), the blood disease porphyria, an infection, shingles, or chickenpox
- if you have a history of seizures or head injury
- if you are receiving or have recently received (within the past 4 weeks) radiation therapy or treatment with other cancer medicines
- if you take any medicine that may increase the risk of seizures. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure if any of your medicines may increase the risk of seizures
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with chlorambucil. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially the following:
- Palifermin because the risk of increased severity and duration of mouth or tongue sores may be increased
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if chlorambucil may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use chlorambucil:
Use chlorambucil as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Take chlorambucil by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
- Chlorambucil works best if it is taken at the same time each day.
- Drinking extra fluids while you are taking chlorambucil is recommended. Check with your doctor for instructions.
- If you miss a dose of chlorambucil, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use chlorambucil.
Important safety information:
- If nausea, vomiting, or loss of appetite occurs, ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist for ways to lessen these effects.
- Chlorambucil may reduce the number of clot-forming cells (platelets) in your blood. Avoid activities that may cause bruising or injury. Tell your doctor if you have unusual bruising or bleeding. Tell your doctor if you have dark, tarry, or bloody stools.
- Chlorambucil may lower the ability of your body to fight infection. Avoid contact with people who have colds or infections. Tell your doctor if you notice signs of infection like fever, sore throat, rash, or chills.
- Use of chlorambucil may increase your risk of developing another type of cancer. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
- Both reversible and permanent fertility problems have been reported in men and women taking chlorambucil. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
- Women who may become pregnant should use an effective form of birth control while taking chlorambucil. If you have questions about effective birth control, talk with your doctor.
- Do not receive a live vaccine (eg, measles, mumps) while you are taking chlorambucil. Talk with your doctor before you receive any vaccine.
- Lab tests, such as complete blood cell counts, may be performed while you use chlorambucil. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Caution is advised when using chlorambucil in CHILDREN with a certain kidney problem (nephrotic syndrome); they have an increased risk of seizure.
- Chlorambucil should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Chlorambucil may cause harm to the fetus. Avoid becoming pregnant while taking chlorambucil. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using chlorambucil while you are pregnant. It is not known if chlorambucil is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking chlorambucil.
Possible side effects of chlorambucil:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); absence of menstrual period; agitation; burning, numbness, or tingling; confusion; dark, tarry, or bloody stools; decreased coordination; fever, chills, or persistent cough or sore throat; hallucinations; limp muscles or inability to move; muscle twitching; nausea; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; seizures; shortness of breath or difficulty breathing; sores in the mouth or on the lips; symptoms of liver problems (eg, dark urine, pale stools, persistent loss of appetite, stomach pain, yellowing of the skin or eyes); tremors; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual lumps or growths; unusual tiredness or weakness; vomiting.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include agitation; decreased coordination; seizures; signs of infection (eg, fever, chills, persistent cough or sore throat); unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual tiredness or weakness.Proper storage of chlorambucil:
Store chlorambucil in the refrigerator, between 36 and 46 degrees F (2 and 8 degrees C). Do not freeze. Keep chlorambucil out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about chlorambucil, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Chlorambucil is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take chlorambucil or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about chlorambucil. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to chlorambucil. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using chlorambucil.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.