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Cemiplimab

Generic Name: cemiplimab (se MIP li mab)
Brand Name: Libtayo

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com on Nov 30, 2018 – Written by Cerner Multum

What is cemiplimab?

Cemiplimab is used to treat a certain type of skin cancer that has spread to other parts of the body or cannot be treated with radiation or surgery.

Cemiplimab may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important Information

Cemiplimab strengthens your immune system to help your body fight against cancer cells. This may cause the immune system to attack normal healthy tissues or organs. When this happens, you may develop serious or life-threatening medical problems.

Call your doctor at once if you have new or worsening symptoms such as: chest pain, cough, breathing problems, swelling, nausea, vomiting, changes in appetite or weight, stomach pain, easy bruising or bleeding, mood or behavior changes, severe weakness, vision problems, hair loss, increased or decreased urination, blood in your urine, numbness and tingling, dark urine, or yellowing of the skin or eyes.

Before taking this medicine

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

You may need to have a negative pregnancy test before starting this treatment.

Do not use cemiplimab if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are using cemiplimab and for at least 4 months after your last dose. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during this time.

Do not breast-feed while using this medicine, and for at least 4 months after your last dose.

How is cemiplimab given?

Cemiplimab is given as an infusion into a vein. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.

This medicine must be given slowly, and the infusion can take at least 30 minutes to complete.

Cemiplimab is usually given once every 3 weeks until your body no longer responds to the medication.

You will need frequent medical tests.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your cemiplimab injection.

What happens if I overdose?

Since cemiplimab is given by a healthcare professional in a medical setting, an overdose is unlikely to occur.

What should I avoid while receiving cemiplimab?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

Cemiplimab side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Some side effects may occur during the injection. Tell your caregiver right away if you feel dizzy, light-headed, chilled or feverish, itchy, tingly, or have neck or back pain, trouble breathing, or swelling in your face.

Cemiplimab strengthens your immune system to help your body fight against cancer cells. This may cause the immune system to attack normal healthy tissues or organs. When this happens, you may develop serious or life-threatening medical problems.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • new or worsening cough, shortness of breath;

  • chest pain, irregular heartbeats;

  • swollen glands;

  • a seizure;

  • severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloody or tarry stools;

  • kidney problems--swelling in your ankles, blood in your urine, little or no urination;

  • liver problems--right-sided upper stomach pain, loss of appetite, drowsiness, easy bruising or bleeding, dark urine, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);

  • nervous system problems--neck stiffness, confusion, severe muscle weakness, hallucinations, vision problems, eye pain or redness; or

  • signs of a hormonal disorder--frequent or unusual headaches, dizziness, feeling very tired, mood or behavior changes, hoarse or deepened voice, increased hunger or thirst, increased urination, constipation, hair loss, feeling cold, weight gain, or weight loss.

Your cancer treatments may be delayed or permanently discontinued if you have certain side effects.

Common side effects may include:

  • tiredness;

  • rash; or

  • diarrhea.

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.

Cemiplimab dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Squamous Cell Carcinoma:

350 mg IV over 30 minutes every 3 weeks until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity

Use: For the treatment of patients with metastatic cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (CSCC) or locally advanced CSCC who are not candidates for curative surgery or curative radiation

What other drugs will affect cemiplimab?

Other drugs may affect cemiplimab, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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