Generic name: cyclosporine (oral/injection) [ SYE-kloe-SPOR-een ]
Brand names: Gengraf, Neoral, SandIMMUNE
Dosage forms: injectable solution (50 mg/mL), oral capsule (100 mg; 25 mg; modified 100 mg; modified 25 mg; modified 50 mg), ... show all 4 dosage forms
Drug class: Calcineurin inhibitors
What is cyclosporine?
Cyclosporine weakens your body's immune system, to help keep it from "rejecting" a transplanted organ such as a kidney. Organ rejection happens when the immune system treats the new organ as an invader and attacks it.
Cyclosporine is used to prevent organ rejection after a kidney, heart, or liver transplant.
Cyclosporine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Cyclosporine 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.
Cyclosporine may cause serious side effects. Call your doctor at once if you have:
problems with speech, thought, vision, or muscle movement (may start gradually and get worse quickly);
severe headache, blurred vision, pounding in your neck or ears;
pale skin, easy bruising, unusual bleeding;
high potassium level--nausea, weakness, tingly feeling, chest pain, irregular heartbeats, loss of movement;
kidney problems--urinating less, swelling in your feet or ankles, feeling tired or short of breath;
liver problems--loss of appetite, stomach pain (upper right side), jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
Common side effects of cyclosporine may include:
tremors or shaking;
acne, increased growth of facial or body hair;
increased blood pressure;
nausea, diarrhea; or
swollen or painful gums.
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.
Related/similar drugsTaltz, methotrexate, hydroxychloroquine, Humira, tacrolimus, azathioprine, Enbrel
You may not be able to use cyclosporine if you have certain medical conditions or are using certain medicines or receiving phototherapy or radiation treatments. MAKE SURE ALL DOCTORS INVOLVED IN YOUR CARE KNOW YOU ARE USING CYCLOSPORINE.
Cyclosporine may increase your risk of developing serious infections, cancer, or transplant failure. Talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits of using this medication.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use cyclosporine if you are allergic to it. You may not be able to use cyclosporine if you have:
untreated or uncontrolled high blood pressure; or
any type of cancer.
If you are being treated for psoriasis, you should not receive ultraviolet light therapy (PUVA or UVB), radiation treatments, coal tar, or drugs that weaken the immune system (such as methotrexate) while you are receiving cyclosporine.
Cyclosporine affects your immune system, and may cause certain white blood cells to grow out of control. This can lead to cancer, severe brain infection causing disability or death, or a viral infection causing kidney transplant failure. Talk with your doctor about the risks of using cyclosporine.
MAKE SURE ALL DOCTORS INVOLVED IN YOUR CARE KNOW YOU ARE USING CYCLOSPORINE.
Tell your doctor if you have ever had:
liver or kidney disease;
high blood pressure; or
if you are scheduled to receive any vaccine.
It is not known whether this medicine will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
You should not breastfeed while you are using cyclosporine.
How should I use cyclosporine?
Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose. Use the medicine exactly as directed.
Cyclosporine oral is taken by mouth.
Cyclosporine injection is given in a vein if you are unable to take the medicine by mouth.
You may take oral cyclosporine with or without food, but take it the same way each time. Take the medicine at the same time each day.
Measure liquid medicine with the supplied syringe or a dose-measuring device (not a kitchen spoon).
Sandimmune oral solution may be mixed with milk, chocolate milk, or orange juice at room temperature to make the medicine taste better. Neoral "modified" (microemulsion) oral solution should be mixed with orange juice or apple juice that is at room temperature.
Your dose needs may change if you switch to a different brand, strength, or form of this medicine. Avoid medication errors by using only the form and strength your doctor prescribes.
Use all medications as directed and read all medication guides you receive. Do not change your dose or dosing schedule without your doctor's advice.
You will need frequent medical tests. You must remain under the care of a doctor while you are using cyclosporine.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.
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 using cyclosporine?
Grapefruit may interact with cyclosporine and lead to unwanted side effects. Avoid the use of grapefruit products.
Avoid drinking alcohol.
Avoid receiving a "live" vaccine. The vaccine may not work as well while you are using cyclosporine. Live vaccines include measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), rotavirus, typhoid, yellow fever, varicella (chickenpox), and zoster (shingles).
Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Tell your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.
What other drugs will affect cyclosporine?
Sometimes it is not safe to use certain medications at the same time. Some drugs can affect your blood levels of other drugs you take, which may increase side effects or make the medications less effective.
Cyclosporine can harm your kidneys, especially if you also use certain medicines for infections, cancer, osteoporosis, organ transplant rejection, bowel disorders, high blood pressure, or pain or arthritis (including Advil, Motrin, and Aleve).
Many drugs can affect cyclosporine. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed here. Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use.
Both Cequa and Restasis are eye drops that contain cyclosporine. They are used to increase tear production in patients with dry eye disease (medically called keratoconjunctivitis sicca). However, Cequa incorporates a novel nanomicellar technology of cyclosporine A to allow delivery of high concentrations of the medication into the eye. Restasis is not manufactured using nanomicellar technology. Nanomicellar technology can help deliver poorly water-soluble drugs into the eye and protect the drug molecule. Continue reading
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- During pregnancy
- Drug class: calcineurin inhibitors
- En español
- Cyclosporine (Intravenous) advanced reading
- Cyclosporine (Oral) (Advanced Reading)
- Cyclosporine Capsules, Modified
- Cyclosporine Injection
- Cyclosporine Oral Solution
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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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