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BICNU 100 MG-POWDER AND SOLVENT FOR SOLUTION FOR INFUSION

Active substance(s): CARMUSTINE

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Package leaflet: Information for the user

BiCNU 100 mg-Powder and solvent for solution for infusion
carmustine
Read all of this leaflet carefully before you start using this medicine because it contains important
information for you.
 Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again.
 If you have any further questions, ask your doctor, pharmacist or nurse.
 If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor or nurse. This includes any possible side effects not
listed in this leaflet. See section 4.
What is in this leaflet:
1. What BiCNU is and what it is used for
2. What you need to know before you use BiCNU
3. How to use BiCNU
4. Possible side effects
5. How to store BiCNU
6. Contents of the pack and other information

1. What BiCNU is and what it is used for
BiCNU is a medicine which contains carmustine. Carmustine belongs to a group of anticancer
substances known as nitrosourea that act by slowing the growth of cancer cells.
BiCNU is used as palliative therapy (relieving and preventing the suffering of patients) a s a single
agent or in established combination therapy with other approved anticancer substances in certain types
of cancers, like:
 Brain tumors- glioblastoma, medulloblastoma, astrocytoma and metastatic brain tumors
 Multiple myeloma (malignant tumor developing from bone marrow)
 Hodgkin’s disease (lymphoid tumor)
 Non-Hodgkin’s lymphomas (lymphoid tumor)

2. What you need to know before you use BiCNU
Do not use BiCNU
if you are allergic to carmustine, other nitrosourea medicines or any of the other ingredients of
this medicine (listed in section 6).
BiCNU should not be used in patients who have reduced number of blood platelets (thrombocytes), the
white blood cells (leucocytes) or the red blood cells (erythrocytes), either as a consequence of
chemotherapy or even out of other causes.

Warnings and precautions
Talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse before using BiCNU.

Since the major toxicity is delayed bone marrow suppression, your doctor will monitor blood counts
weekly for at least 6 weeks after a dose. At the recommended dosage, courses of BiCNU would not be
given more frequently than every 6 weeks. The dosage will be confirmed with the blood count.
Before treatment, your liver and kidney function would be tested and observed regularly during the
treatment.
Since the use of BiCNU can lead to lung damages, your X-ray of the chest region and the lung
function tests would be conducted (Please also see the section “Possible side effects”).
Your doctor will counsel about the possibility of lung damaging effect of BiCNU and allergic reactions
and their symptoms. If such symptoms occur, your doctor has to be consulted (see section 4).
Other medicines and BiCNU
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking, have recently taken or might take any other medicines,
including medicines obtained without prescription, such as:






Phenytoin, used in epilepsy
Cimetidine, used for stomach problems like indigestion
Digoxin, used if you have abnormal heart rythm
Melphalan, an anticancer drug

Pregnancy, breast-feeding and fertility

If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, think you may be pregnant or are planning to have a
baby, ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice before taking this medicine.
Pregnancy and fertility
BiCNU should not be used during pregnancy because it may harm an unborn baby. Therefore

BiCNU should not normally be administered to pregnant women. If used during pregnancy,
the patient must be aware of the potential risk to the foetus. Women of childbearing potential are
advised to avoid becoming pregnant.
Male patients should use adequate contraceptives measures during treatment with BiCNU for at
least 6 months.
Breast-feeding
You should not breast-feed while taking this medicine.
Driving and using machines
Effect on ability to drive and use machines is not known. You must check with your doctor before driving
or operating any tools or machines because the amount of alcohol in this medicine may impair your ability
to drive or use machines.
BiCNU contains ethanol (alcohol)
This medicinal product contains 0.57 vol% ethanol (alcohol), which means 7.68 g per dose. This
corresponds to 11.32 ml of beer or 4.72 ml wine, per dose. This may be harmful for those suffering
from alcoholism, liver disease or epilepsy (fits)
3. How to use BiCNU
BiCNU will always be given to you by a healthcare professional with experience in the use of
anticancer agents.

This medication is for intravenous use.

Adults
Dosage is based on your medical condition, body size and response to treatment. It is usually given at
least every 6 weeks.The recommended dose of BiCNU as a single agent in previously untreated
patients is 150 to 200 mg/m 2 intravenously every 6 weeks. This may be given as a single dose or
divided into two daily injections such as 75 to 100 mg/m 2 on two successive days. Dosage will also

depend if BiCNU is given with other anti-cancer drugs.
Doses will be adjusted according to how you respond to the treatment.

Your blood count will be monitored frequently to avoid toxicity in your bone marrow and adjust
the dose if necessary.
Route of administration
Intravenous administration should be conducted as an infusion.
BiCNU is given into a vein by a drip over a one to two hour period. The time of infusion should not
be less than one hour to avoid burning and pain at the injected area. The injected area will be
monitored during the administration.

The duration of the treatment is determined by the doctor and may vary for each patient.
Use in children
BiCNU can be used with extreme caution in children due to high risk of lung toxicity.
Use in elderly

BiCNU can be used with caution in elderly patients. The kidney function will be carefully monitored.
If you use more BiCNU than you should

As a doctor or nurse will be giving you this medicine, it is unlikely that you will receive an
incorrect dose. Tell your doctor or nurse if you have any concerns about the amount of medicine
that you receive.
If you have any further questions on the use of this product, ask your doctor or pharmacist or
nurse.
4. Possible side effects
Like all medicines, this medicine can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.

Tell your doctor or nurse immediately if you notice any of the following:
Any sudden wheeziness, difficulty in breathing, swelling of the eyelids, face or lips, rash or
itching (especially affecting your whole body), and feeling you are going to faint. These may be
signs of severe allergic reaction.

BiCNU may cause the following side effects:
Very common (may affect more than 1 in 10 people)
 Delayed myelosuppression (decrease in blood cells in bone marrow);
 Ataxia (lack of voluntary coordination of muscle movements);
 Dizziness;
 Headache;
 Transient redness in the eye, blurred vision, retinal bleeding;
 Hypotension (fall in blood pressure) in high-dose therapy;
 Phlebitis (inflamation of the veins);
 Respiratory disorders (lung related disorders) with breathing problems;
 Severe nausea and vomiting; beginning within 2-4 hours of administration and lasting for 4-6 hours;
 When used on the skin, inflammation of the skin (dermatitis)
 Accidental contact with skin may cause transient hyperpigmentation (darkening of an area
of skin or nails)

Common (may affect up to 1 in 10 people)
 Acute leukemias and bone marrow dysplasias (abnormal development of the bone marrow) following
long term use;
 Anaemia (decrease in the amount of red blood cells in the blood);
 Encephalopathy (disorder of brain) in high-dose therapy;
 Anorexia;
 Constipation;
 Diarrhoea;
 Inflammation of the mouth and lips;
 Reversible liver toxicity in high-dose therapy, delayed up to 60 days after administration. This can be
manifested by increased liver enzymes and bilirubin;
 Alopecia (loss of hair);
 Flushing of the skin;
 Reactions on the injection site

Rare (may affect up to 1 in 1,000 people)
 Veno-occlusive disease (progressive blockage of the veins) in high-dose therapy;
 Breathing problems caused by interstitial fibrosis (with lower doses);
 Kidneys toxicity;
 Gynecomastia (breast growth in males)
Not known (frequency cannot be estimated from the available data)
 Muscular pain;
 Seizures (fits) including status epilepticus;
 Tissue damage due to leakage in injection area;
 Infertility;
 BiCNU has been shown to adversely affect the development of unborn babies
Reporting of side effects
If you get any side effects, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse. This includes any possible side effects
not listed in this leaflet. You can also report side effects directly via the Yellow Card Scheme at:
www.mhra.gov.uk/yellowcard. By reporting side effects you can help provide more information on the
safety of this medicine.

5. How to store BiCNU
Keep this medicine out of the sight and reach of children.
Do not use this medicine after the expiry date which is stated on the label and carton after statement “can
be used up to’. The expiry date refers to the last day of that month.
This medicine will be stored by your doctor or health care professional.
The unopened vial of the dry drug must be stored in a refrigerator (2°-8°C). After reconstitution as
recommended, BiCNU is stable for 24 hours under refrigeration (2°-8°C) in a glass container and must be
protected from light.
The reconstituted solution further diluted with 500 ml sodium chloride for injection or 5% glucose for
injection, in glass or polypropylene containers, results in a solution which should be utilized within 8
hours at room temperature and be protected from light. These solutions are also stable 24 hours under
refrigeration (2-8°C) and an additional 6 hours at room temperature protected from light.
An indication of the decomposition is the appearance of an oil film at the bottom of the vial. This
medicine should not be used any further. When you are not clear about the fact whether the product is
adequately cooled, then you should immediately inspect each and every vial in the carton. For verification,
hold the vial in bright light. Carmustine appears with small quantities of dried flakes or dried rigid mass.
Do not throw away any medicines via wastewater or household waste. Ask your pharmacist or doctor how
to throw away medicines you no longer use. These measures will help protect the environment.

6. Contents of the pack and other information
What BiCNU contains
The active substance is carmustine.
A 30 ml vial contains 100 mg carmustine and a 5 ml vial contains 3 ml sterile diluent (dehydrated
alcohol).
What BiCNU looks like and contents of the pack
Powder and solvent for solution for infusion.
Yellowish powder for reconstitution.
Appearance of solution: colorless to light yellow
Powder: Type I amber glass vial (30 ml) sealed with a dark grey bromo butyl lyo rubber stopper and
aluminium seal having polypropylene cap.
Diluent: Type I glass vial (5 ml) sealed with a grey bromo butyl rubber stopper with an aluminium seal
having polypropylene cap.
Marketing Authorisation Holder and Manufacturer
Marketing Authorisation Holder
Creative Pharma Solutions, s.r.o.,
Italska 17
120 00 Prague 2
Czech Republic

Manufacturer
Tillomed Laboratories Limited
3 Howard Road, Eaton Socon
St. Neots,
Cambridgeshire
PE19 8ET,
United Kingdom
Emcure Pharma UK Limited
Devonshire house
582 Honeypot lane
Stanmore
HA71JS,
United Kingdom
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This leaflet was last revised in {MM/YYYY}

07/2015

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Source: Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

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