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Matulane

Generic Name: procarbazine (pro CAR ba zeen)
Brand Name: Matulane

Medically reviewed on August 4, 2017

What is Matulane?

Matulane is a cancer medicine that interferes with the growth and spread of cancer cells in the body.

Matulane is given with other cancer medicines to treat Hodgkin's Disease (a type of blood cancer).

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

Important Information

You should not take Matulane if you have bone marrow suppression.

Matulane can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections and help your blood to clot. You may get an infection or bleed more easily. Call your doctor if you have unusual bruising or bleeding, or signs of infection (fever, chills, body aches).

Before taking this medicine

You should not take Matulane if you are allergic to it, or if you have bone marrow suppression.

To make sure Matulane is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • kidney disease;

  • liver disease;

  • anemia (low red blood cells);

  • low levels of platelets in the blood;

  • low white blood cell counts;

  • fluid retention; or

  • if you have received other cancer medications or radiation within the past 30 days.

Do not use Matulane if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Use effective birth control, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment.

Matulane can lower sperm count in men, which may affect fertility (your ability to have children).

It is not known whether Matulane passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while you are taking this medicine.

How should I take Matulane?

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Matulane can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections and help your blood to clot. Your blood will need to be tested often. Your cancer treatments may be delayed based on the results of these tests.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

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 Matulane?

Do not drink alcohol. Matulane can cause unpleasant side effects when you drink alcohol.

Avoid smoking during your treatment. Smoking may increase your risk of lung cancer while taking Matulane.

Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Tell your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.

This medicine can pass into body fluids (urine, feces, vomit). Caregivers should wear rubber gloves while cleaning up a patient's body fluids, handling contaminated trash or laundry or changing diapers. Wash hands before and after removing gloves. Wash soiled clothing and linens separately from other laundry.

Do not receive a "live" vaccine while using Matulane. 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), rotavirus, typhoid, yellow fever, varicella (chickenpox), zoster (shingles), and nasal flu (influenza) vaccine.

While you are taking Matulane, you should avoid foods that are high in tyramine, including:

  • avocados, bananas, figs, papaya, raisins, and sauerkraut;

  • beef or chicken liver, meats prepared with tenderizer, bologna, pepperoni, summer sausage, game meat, meat extracts;

  • pickled or smoked fish, anchovies, dried fish, herring, caviar, shrimp paste;

  • beer (alcoholic and nonalcoholic), wine (especially red wine), champagne, sherry, vermouth, and other distilled spirits;

  • caffeine (including coffee, tea, cola), ginseng;

  • cheese -- especially aged or processed cheeses (American, blue, boursault, brie, camembert, cheddar, gruyere, mozzarella, Parmesan, Romano, Roquefort, Swiss);

  • chocolate;

  • sour cream and yogurt;

  • soy sauce, miso soup, bean curd, fava beans; or

  • yeast extracts.

Eating tyramine while you are taking Matulane can raise your blood pressure to dangerous levels, causing life-threatening side effects.

Matulane 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.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • diarrhea that is watery;

  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;

  • numbness, burning pain, or tingly feeling;

  • confusion, hallucinations, problems with vision or speech, trouble with walking or daily activities;

  • feeling unsteady, loss of balance or coordination;

  • tremors, seizure (convulsions);

  • cough, chest pain, trouble breathing;

  • fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms;

  • easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin;

  • white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips;

  • jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or

  • bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds.

Common side effects may include:

  • mild nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, stomach pain;

  • dry mouth, constipation, mild diarrhea;

  • mild itching or rash, temporary hair loss;

  • muscle of joint pain;

  • headache, dizziness, feeling tired;

  • urinating more than usual; or

  • changes in your menstrual periods.

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 Matulane?

Taking Matulane with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can increase these effects. Ask your doctor before taking this medicine with a sleeping pill, narcotic pain medicine, muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety, depression, or seizures.

Tell your doctor about all medicines you use, and those you start or stop using during your treatment with Matulane, especially:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with procarbazine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

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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