Cytarabine and daunorubicin (liposomal)
Medically reviewed on September 15, 2017
What is cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal?
Cytarabine and daunorubicin are cancer medicines that interfere with the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal is a combination medicine used in adults to treat acute myeloid leukemia that is newly diagnosed.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
cytarabine and daunorubicin can make it easier for you to bleed. Contact your doctor or seek emergency medical attention if you have easy bruising, unusual bleeding, or any bleeding that will not stop. You may also have bleeding on the inside of your body, such as in your stomach or intestines, or in your brain.
Call your doctor at once if you have: signs of bleeding in your digestive tract--feeling very weak or dizzy, severe stomach pain, black or bloody stools, or if you cough up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds; or signs of bleeding in the brain--sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), sudden severe headache, or problems with vision or balance.
Before taking this medicine
To make sure cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:
liver or kidney disease;
radiation treatment of your chest area; or
Wilson's disease (a rare genetic disorder).
You may need to have a negative pregnancy test before starting this treatment.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal can harm an unborn baby. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are using this medicine, whether you are a man or a woman. Men should use condoms. Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal use by either parent may cause birth defects.
Keep using birth control for at least 6 months after your last dose of cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal. Tell your doctor right away if a pregnancy occurs while either the mother or the father is using cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal.
This medicine may affect fertility (ability to have children) in men. However, it is important to use birth control to prevent pregnancy because cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal may harm the baby if a pregnancy does occur.
It is not known whether cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine and for at least 2 weeks after your last dose.
How is cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal given?
The liposomal combination of cytarabine and daunorubicin is not given in the same doses or on the same schedule as other forms of cytarabine or daunorubicin. If you have used either of these medicines before, your dose schedule of cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal may be different.
Before each treatment, you will need blood tests to make sure you do not have conditions that would prevent you from safely receiving cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal.
Your heart, kidney, and liver function may also need to be checked before each dose.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal is injected into a vein through an IV. A healthcare provider will give you this injection. The medicine must be given slowly, and the infusion can take at least 90 minutes to complete.
Tell your caregivers if you feel any burning, pain, or swelling around the IV needle when cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal is injected.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal is usually given every other day for up to 3 infusions a 5-day treatment cycle. If you need additional treatment cycles, you will need to wait 2 to 8 weeks before you receive the medicine again.
Your doctor will determine how long to treat you with cytarabine and daunorubicin.
You may be given other medications to help prevent serious side effects or allergic reaction. Keep taking these medicines for as long as your doctor has prescribed.
Tell your doctor if you have any changes in height or weight. Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal doses are based on body surface area (height and weight), and any changes may affect your dose.
This medicine can make it easier for you to bleed. Contact your doctor or seek emergency medical attention if you have easy bruising, unusual bleeding, or any bleeding that will not stop.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal injection.
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 receiving cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal 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.
Cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal can make it easier for you to bleed. Call your doctor or seek emergency medical attention if you have:
easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, rectum), or any bleeding that will not stop;
signs of bleeding in your digestive tract--feeling very weak or dizzy, severe stomach pain, black or bloody stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds; or
signs of bleeding in the brain--sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), sudden severe headache, problems with vision or balance.
Call your doctor at once if you have:
severe or ongoing diarrhea;
sores or white patches in or around your mouth, trouble swallowing or talking, dry mouth, bad breath, altered sense of taste;
fast, slow, or uneven heart rate;
pain, burning, irritation, or skin changes where the injection was given; or
signs of infection--fever, chills, swollen gums, skin sores, cold or flu symptoms, cough with mucus, chest pain, wheezing, trouble breathing, rapid heart rate, fainting.
Your cancer treatments may be delayed or permanently discontinued if you have certain side effects.
Common side effects may include:
bleeding (especially nosebleeds);
cough, trouble breathing;
muscle or joint pain;
headache, feeling tired;
swelling anywhere in your body; or
sleep problems (insomnia).
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)
Cytarabine and daunorubicin dosing information
Usual Adult Dose for Acute Myeloid Leukemia:
-First Induction (Cycle 1): (Cytarabine 100 mg/m2 and daunorubicin 44 mg/m2) liposome IV over 90 minutes on days 1, 3, and 5
-Second Induction (for patients who do not achieve remission with first cycle): (Cytarabine 100 mg/m2 and daunorubicin 44 mg/m2) liposome IV over 90 minutes on days 1, and 3 administered 2 to 5 weeks after the first induction cycle (if no unacceptable toxicity with first induction)
-Consolidation: (Cytarabine 65 mg/m2 and daunorubicin 29 mg/m2) liposome IV over 90 minutes on days 1 and 3; administer the first consolidation cycle 5 to 8 weeks after the start of the last induction; administer the second consolidation cycle 5 to 8 weeks after the start of the first consolidation cycle in patients who do not show disease progression or unacceptable toxicity
-Prior to initiating induction, assess cardiac function and obtain liver and renal function studies.
-For patients who do not achieve remission with the first induction cycle, a second induction cycle may be administered 2 to 5 weeks after the first if there was no unacceptable toxicity.
Use: For newly-diagnosed therapy-related acute myeloid leukemia (t-AML) or AML with myelodysplasia-related changes (AML-MRC)
What other drugs will affect cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal?
Other drugs may interact with cytarabine and daunorubicin liposomal, 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.
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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