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Carmustine (kar MUS teen)

Pediatric Medication

Brand Names: U.S.

BiCNU; Gliadel Wafer

Brand Names: Canada

BiCNU; Gliadel Wafer

Warning

Shot:

  • This drug may have effects on the bone marrow. The bone marrow may not be able to make cells found in the blood as well as it used to for a few weeks.
  • Have your child’s blood work checked often for at least 6 weeks after a dose. Talk with your child’s doctor.
  • This drug may cause very bad and sometimes deadly lung problems. People getting a large total dose for all treatments have a greater chance of lung problems. Call your child’s doctor right away if your child has trouble breathing. These lung problems can happen many years after getting this drug, mainly in people who got this drug when they were a child.

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to treat cancer.
  • It may be given to your child for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

What do I need to tell the doctor BEFORE my child takes this drug?

  • If your child has an allergy to this drug or any part of this drug.
  • If your child is allergic to any drugs like this one or any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell the doctor about the allergy and what signs your child had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
This drug may interact with other drugs or health problems.
Tell the doctor and pharmacist about all of your child’s drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for your child to take this drug with all of their drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug your child takes without checking with the doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while my child takes this drug?

All products:

  • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that your child is using this drug.
  • If your child has an upset stomach or loose stools (diarrhea), is throwing up, or is not hungry, talk with the doctor. There may be ways to lower these side effects.
  • Talk with the doctor before your child gets any vaccines. Use with this drug may either raise the chance of very bad infection or make the vaccine not work as well.
  • Your child may have more chance of getting infections. Avoid crowds and people with infections, colds, or flu.
  • Your child may bleed more easily. Make sure your child is careful and avoids injury. Be sure your child has a soft toothbrush.
  • This drug may affect sperm in males. This may affect being able to father a child later in life. Talk with the doctor.

If your child is or may be sexually active:

  • Have your child use birth control to prevent pregnancy while taking this drug.

If your child is pregnant or breast-feeding a baby:

  • This drug may cause harm to the unborn baby if your child takes it during pregnancy.
  • Talk with the doctor if your child is pregnant, becomes pregnant, or is breast-feeding a baby. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug.

Shot:

  • Other types of cancer may rarely happen later in life.
  • Have your child’s lung function checked. Talk with the doctor.
  • Use with care in children. Talk with the doctor.

What are some side effects that I need to call my child’s doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your child’s doctor or get medical help right away if your child has any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

All products:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of infection. These include a fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, wound that will not heal, or anal itching or pain.
  • Chest pain.
  • Any bruising or bleeding.

Wafer (implant):

  • Change in strength on 1 side is greater than the other, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, or blurred eyesight.
  • If seizures are new or worse after starting this drug.
  • Very bad headache.
  • Very upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • Neck stiffness.
  • A wound that does not heal.
  • Low mood (depression).

Shot:

  • Signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
  • Signs of kidney problems like unable to pass urine, change in the amount of urine passed, blood in the urine, or a big weight gain.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • This drug may cause tissue damage if the drug leaks from the vein. Tell your child’s nurse if your child has any redness, burning, pain, swelling, blisters, skin sores, or leaking of fluid where the drug is going into your child’s body.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your child’s doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother your child or do not go away:

All products:

  • Upset stomach or throwing up.

Wafer (implant):

  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Belly pain.
  • Back pain.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your child’s doctor. Call your child’s doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best given?

Give this drug as ordered by your child’s doctor. Read and follow the dosing on the label closely.

Shot:

  • It is given as an infusion into a vein over a period of time.

Wafer (implant):

  • This drug is placed in the brain during surgery.

What do I do if my child misses a dose?

  • Call your child’s doctor to find out what to do.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?

  • This drug will be given to your child in a hospital or doctor’s office. You will not store it at home.

General drug facts

  • If your child’s symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your child’s doctor.
  • Do not share your child’s drug with others and do not give anyone else’s drug to your child.
  • Keep a list of all your child’s drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your child’s doctor.
  • Talk with your child’s doctor before giving your child any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your child’s doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

Copyright

Copyright © 2014 Clinical Drug Information, LLC and Lexi-Comp, Inc.