Generic Name: mycophenolic acid (MYE koe phe NOLE ik AS id)
Brand Names: Myfortic
What is Myfortic?
Myfortic (mycophenolic acid) is an immunosuppressant. Your body may "reject" an organ transplant when the immune system treats the new organ as an invader. An immunosuppressant helps to prevent this rejection.
Myfortic is used to prevent your body from rejecting a kidney transplant. Myfortic is usually given with cyclosporine and a steroid medicine.
Myfortic can cause a miscarriage or birth defects, especially if used during the first 3 months of pregnancy. If you are a woman of child-bearing potential, you must use specific types of birth control to prevent pregnancy before, during, and shortly after treatment with Myfortic.
Myfortic is sometimes given to pregnant women. Although this medicine can affect pregnancy or fertility, it is sometimes given to women who are unable to use other needed transplant medications.
Using Myfortic may increase your risk of developing serious infections or other types of cancer, such as lymphoma or skin cancer. You must remain under the care of a doctor while you are using Myfortic.
Call your doctor right away if you have signs of infection such as: fever, swollen glands, flu symptoms, change in your mental state, problems with speech or walking, decreased vision, mouth sores, easy bruising or bleeding, pain or burning when you urinate, blood in your urine, a new skin lesion, or a mole that has changed in size or color.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use Myfortic if you are allergic to mycophenolic acid or mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept).
Using Myfortic may increase your risk of developing serious infections or other types of cancer, such as lymphoma or skin cancer. Ask your doctor about your specific risk.
To make sure Myfortic is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
a stomach ulcer or other disorder of your stomach or intestines;
a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection; or
a rare inherited enzyme deficiency such as Lesch-Nyhan syndrome or Kelley-Seegmiller syndrome.
FDA pregnancy category D. Myfortic can cause a miscarriage or birth defects, especially during the first 3 months of pregnancy. You will need to have a negative pregnancy test before and during treatment with this medicine. You must prevent pregnancy before and during your treatment with Myfortic, and for at least 6 weeks after your treatment ends.
See also: Pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)
If you are a woman of child-bearing potential, you will be required to use birth control. You have child-bearing potential (even if you are not sexually active) from the age of puberty until you have been in menopause for at least 12 months in a row.
Myfortic can make hormonal birth control (pills, injections, implants, skin patches, or vaginal rings) less effective. If you use hormonal birth control, you must also use a back-up barrier method (such as a cervical sponge, a male or female condom, or a diaphragm or cervical cap used together with spermicide).
You do not need to use additional birth control if you use an intrauterine device (IUD), if you have had a tubal ligation, or if your sexual partner has had a vasectomy.
This medicine comes with patient instructions about the most effective non-hormonal forms of birth control to use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.
If a pregnancy occurs during treatment, do not stop taking Myfortic. Call your doctor for instructions. Also call the Mycophenolate Pregnancy Registry (1-800-617-8191).
Myfortic is sometimes given to pregnant women. Your doctor will decide whether you should use this medicine if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant. Although this medicine can affect pregnancy or fertility, it is sometimes given to women who are unable to use other needed transplant medications.
It is not known whether mycophenolic acid passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.
How should I take Myfortic?
Take Myfortic exactly as prescribed by your doctor. You must remain under the care of a doctor while you are using Myfortic. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Take Myfortic on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal.
Do not crush, chew, or break a delayed-release tablet. Swallow it whole.
Mycophenolic acid (Myfortic) and mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept) are not absorbed equally in the body. If you are switched from one brand to the other, take only the pills your doctor has prescribed. Always check your refills to make sure you have received the correct brand and type of medicine.
You will need regular medical tests to be sure this medicine is not causing harmful effects.
If you have ever had hepatitis B or C, Myfortic can cause this condition to come back or get worse. You may need blood tests to check your liver function.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.
Myfortic dosing information
Usual Adult Dose for Rejection Prophylaxis:
Initial dose: 720 mg orally twice a day
Doses should be taken on an empty stomach, one hour before or two hours after food intake.
Usual Geriatric Dose for Rejection Prophylaxis:
Dose: 720 mg twice a day
Doses should be taken on an empty stomach, one hour before or two hours after food intake.
The maximum dosage recommended for use in geriatric patients is 720 mg twice a day.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Rejection Prophylaxis:
5 years to 16 years:
Dose: 400 mg/m2 twice a day (up to a maximum of 720 mg twice a day)
Pediatric doses for patients with a body surface area less than 1.19 m2 cannot be accurately administered using currently available formulations of the delayed-release tablets.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
What should I avoid while taking Myfortic?
Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Tell your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.
Do not receive a "live" vaccine while using Myfortic. The vaccine may not work as well during this time, and may not fully protect you from disease. Live vaccines include measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), polio, rotavirus, typhoid, yellow fever, varicella (chickenpox), zoster (shingles), and nasal flu (influenza) vaccine.
Avoid taking an antacid together with Myfortic.
Avoid exposure to sunlight or tanning beds. Mycophenolic acid can increase your risk of developing skin cancer. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) when you are outdoors.
Myfortic side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Myfortic: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Myfortic can lower blood cells that help your body fight infection. This can lead to serious conditions including herpes, shingles, hepatitis, blood or tissue infections, severe brain infection causing disability or death, or a viral infection causing kidney transplant failure. Call your doctor right away if you have:
diarrhea, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, weight loss;
weakness on one side of your body, loss of muscle control;
confusion, thinking problems, loss of interest in things that normally interest you;
fever, night sweats, tiredness, painful mouth sores, flu symptoms;
runny or stuffy nose, cough, sore throat, ear pain, headache;
pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums);
bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds;
pain or burning when you urinate;
swelling, warmth, redness, or oozing around a skin wound; or
a new bump or lesion on your skin, or a mole that has changed in size or color.
Common Myfortic side effects may include:
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
swelling in your ankles or feet; or
high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, shortness of breath).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
What other drugs will affect Myfortic?
Tell your doctor about all medicines you use, and those you start or stop using during your treatment with Myfortic, especially:
an antiviral medicine--acyclovir, ganciclovir.
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with mycophenolic acid, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.
More about Myfortic (mycophenolic acid)
Related treatment guides
Where can I get more information?
- Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about Myfortic.
- Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Myfortic only for the indication prescribed.
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