Generic Name: palifermin (PAL ee FER min)
Brand Name: Kepivance
What is palifermin?
Palifermin is a manmade form of a human protein that affects growth of cells within the tissues lining your mouth and digestive tract (esophagus, stomach, and intestines).
Palifermin is used to help prevent or heal mouth sores and ulcers in people being treated with chemotherapy and stem cell treatment.
Palifermin is used in people receiving chemotherapy to treat blood cancers (Hodgkin's disease, multiple myeloma, leukemia). This medicine is not a treatment for the cancer itself.
Palifermin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about palifermin?
You should not use palifermin if you are allergic to it.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving palifermin?
You should not use palifermin if you are allergic to it.
Palifermin may cause growth in tumors that are not related to a blood cancer. Talk to your doctor if you have a history of any type of tumor.
It is not known whether palifermin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
It is not known whether palifermin passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.
How is palifermin given?
Palifermin is injected into a vein through an IV. A healthcare provider will give you this injection before and after your chemotherapy treatment.
Your palifermin injections are timed to take place at certain intervals as part of your treatment. Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about when to receive each injection.
Palifermin should not be given within 24 hours before or 24 hours after you receive your chemotherapy.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your palifermin injection.
What happens if I overdose?
Since this medicine is given by a healthcare professional in a medical setting, an overdose is unlikely to occur.
What should I avoid while using palifermin?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Palifermin 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:
blurred vision, tunnel vision, eye pain, or seeing halos around lights.
Common side effects may include:
swelling or redness of your skin;
itching or rash;
changes in your sense of taste or sense of touch;
unusual or unpleasant sensations in your mouth;
numbness in or around your mouth;
joint pain; or
discolored or thickened tongue.
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)
Palifermin dosing information
Usual Adult Dose for Mucositis:
60 mcg/kg IV bolus daily for 6 doses administered on 3 consecutive days prior to and 3 consecutive days after myelotoxic therapy
Prior to myelotoxic therapy, administer the third dose no later than 24 to 48 hours prior to initiation of myelotoxic therapy.
Following myelotoxic therapy, administer the first dose no sooner than 4 days after the most recent palifermin administration and on the same day of hematopoietic stem cell infusion.
What other drugs will affect palifermin?
Other drugs may interact with palifermin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.
More about palifermin
- Other brands: Kepivance
Related treatment guides
Where can I get more information?
- Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about palifermin.
- 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.
- Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 3.02.
Date modified: January 10, 2017
Last reviewed: June 15, 2015