Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Oct 18, 2021.
Warning: Differentiation SyndromePatients treated with gilteritinib have experienced symptoms of differentiation syndrome, which can be fatal or life-threatening if not treated. Symptoms may include fever, dyspnea, hypoxia, pulmonary infiltrates, pleural or pericardial effusions, rapid weight gain or peripheral edema, hypotension, or renal dysfunction. If differentiation syndrome is suspected, initiate corticosteroid therapy and hemodynamic monitoring until symptom resolution .
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Antineoplastic Agent
Pharmacologic Class: Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor
Uses for gilteritinib
Gilteritinib is used to treat acute myeloid leukemia with an FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) mutation that has come back or has not improved after previous treatments. Your doctor will test for the presence of this mutation.
Gilteritinib is available only with your doctor's prescription.
Before using gilteritinib
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For gilteritinib, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to gilteritinib or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of gilteritinib in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of gilteritinib in the elderly.
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking gilteritinib, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using gilteritinib with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
Using gilteritinib with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- St John's Wort
Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other medical problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of gilteritinib. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Heart or heart rhythm problems (eg, QT prolongation)—Use with caution. May make this condition worse.
- Hypokalemia (low potassium levels in the blood) or
- Hypomagnesemia (low magnesium levels in the blood)—Must be corrected first before using gilteritinib.
Proper use of gilteritinib
Medicines used to treat cancer are very strong and can have many side effects. Before using gilteritinib, make sure you understand all the risks and benefits. It is important for you to work closely with your doctor during your treatment.
Take gilteritinib only as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.
Gilteritinib comes with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.
You may take gilteritinib with or without food. Take gilteritinib at the same time each day.
Swallow the tablet whole with water. Do not break, crush, or chew it.
The dose of gilteritinib will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of gilteritinib. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For oral dosage form (tablets):
- For acute myeloid leukemia:
- Adults—120 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed and tolerated.
- Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For acute myeloid leukemia:
If you miss a dose of gilteritinib, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
If you miss a dose and it is less than 12 hours until your next regular dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the regular time. If you miss a dose and it is 12 hours or more until your next dose, take the missed dose then go back to your regular schedule.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
Precautions while using gilteritinib
It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure gilteritinib is working properly. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
Using gilteritinib while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. It may also cause birth defects if the father is using it when his sexual partner becomes pregnant. Female patients should use effective birth control during treatment with gilteritinib and for at least 6 months after the last dose. Male patients who have female partners should use effective birth control during treatment with gilteritinib and for at least 4 months after the last dose. If you think you have become pregnant while using gilteritinib, tell your doctor right away.
Your doctor will give you a pregnancy test within 7 days before you use gilteritinib to make sure you are not pregnant.
Using gilteritinib may increase your risk of having a condition called differentiation syndrome, which may be life-threatening. It may occur as early as 1 day after starting gilteritinib and during the first 3 months of treatment. Check with your doctor right away if you start to have a fever, cough, trouble breathing, swelling of the arms or legs or around the neck, groin, or underarms, rapid weight gain, or bone pain. Your doctor may give you a steroid medicine (eg, dexamethasone) to help treat these symptoms.
Tell your doctor right away if you have seizures, headache, confusion, vision problems, unusual drowsiness, tiredness, or weakness. These could be symptoms of a serious nervous system problem called posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome (PRES).
Contact your doctor right away if you have any changes to your heart rhythm. You might feel dizzy or faint, or you might have a fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat. Make sure your doctor knows if you had a heart rhythm problem, including QT prolongation.
Check with your doctor right away if you have loss of appetite, nausea, or pains in stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back. These could be symptoms of pancreatitis (swelling of the pancreas).
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.
Gilteritinib side effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- Bloody urine
- blurred vision
- chest pain or tightness
- decreased frequency or amount of urine
- dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- increased thirst
- loss of appetite
- lower back or side pain
- pounding in the ears
- rapid, shallow breathing
- recurrent fainting
- slow heartbeat
- sore throat
- stomach pain
- swelling of the face, fingers, or lower legs
- trouble breathing
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- weight gain
- blue or pale skin
- chest discomfort
- chest pain, possibly moving to the left arm, neck, or shoulder
- difficulty swallowing
- dilated neck veins
- hives, itching, skin rash
- irregular breathing
- puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
- unusual drowsiness
- vision problems
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
- Change in taste
- decreased appetite
- loss of taste
- muscle or joint pain
- swelling or inflammation of the mouth
- trouble sleeping
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Frequently asked questions
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- Drug class: multikinase inhibitors
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