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Mycophenolate (mye koe FEN oh late)

Adult Medication

Brand Names: U.S.

CellCept; CellCept Intravenous; Myfortic

Brand Names: Canada

Ach-Mycophenolate; Apo-Mycophenolate; CellCept; CellCept I.V.; CO Mycophenolate; JAMP-Mycophenolate; Myfortic; Mylan-Mycophenolate; Novo-Mycophenolate; Sandoz-Mycophenolate Mofetil

Warning

  • You may have more chance of getting an infection. Wash hands often. Stay away from people with infections, colds, or flu.
  • Mycophenolate may raise your chance of getting lymphoma or skin cancer.
  • Use of this drug during pregnancy may cause birth defects or death of the unborn baby. If you are able to become pregnant, you must use birth control that you can trust to prevent pregnancy while taking this drug. Your doctor must talk with you about how to avoid getting pregnant while taking this drug. A pregnancy test will be done right before starting this drug and repeated 8 to 10 days later to show that you are NOT pregnant. If you get pregnant or plan on getting pregnant while taking this drug, call your doctor right away.

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to keep the body from harming the organ after an organ transplant.
  • It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take this drug?

All products:

  • If you have an allergy to mycophenolate or any other part of this drug.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If you have Lesch-Nyhan or Kelley-Seegmiller syndrome or a rare inherited deficiency of hypoxanthine-guanine phosphoribosyl-transferase (HGPRT).
  • If you are taking any of these drugs: Azathioprine, cholestyramine, colestipol, or norfloxacin with metronidazole.
  • If you are taking another drug that has the same drug in it.

Shot:

  • If you are allergic to polysorbate 80.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take this drug with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take this drug?

All products:

  • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that you use this drug.
  • Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how this drug affects you.
  • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), you will need to watch your blood sugar closely.
  • Have your blood work checked often. Talk with your doctor.
  • Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines. Use with this drug may either raise the chance of an infection or make the vaccine not work as well.
  • You may bleed more easily. Be careful and avoid injury. Use a soft toothbrush and an electric razor.
  • There is a chance of skin cancer. Avoid sun, sunlamps, and tanning beds. Use sunscreen and wear clothing and eyewear that protects you from the sun.
  • Do not switch brands or types of this drug (like tablets, liquid) unless you talk with the doctor. They may not work the same.
  • If you are 65 or older, use this drug with care. You could have more side effects.
  • Use with care in children. Talk with the doctor.
  • Use 2 kinds of birth control that you can trust during care and for 6 weeks after care ends.
  • Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may not work as well to prevent pregnancy. Use 2 kinds of birth control while taking this drug.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug while you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.

Liquid (suspension):

  • If you have PKU, talk with your doctor. Some products have phenylalanine.

What are some side effects that I need to call my 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 doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
  • 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 100.5°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.
  • Signs of high blood sugar like confusion, feeling sleepy, more thirst, more hungry, passing urine more often, flushing, fast breathing, or breath that smells like fruit.
  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Fast or slow heartbeat.
  • A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Very bad headache.
  • Any bruising or bleeding.
  • A big weight loss.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Black, tarry, or bloody stools.
  • Throwing up blood or throw up that looks like coffee grounds.
  • A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
  • Change in color or size of a mole.
  • A skin lump or growth.
  • Very bad dizziness or passing out.
  • Mood changes.
  • Night sweats.
  • Very loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Very upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Very bad belly pain.
  • Swelling in the arms or legs.
  • Swollen gland.
  • Pale skin.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • White patches in mouth.
  • Vaginal itching or discharge.
  • Yellow skin or eyes.
  • Not able to pass urine or change in how much urine is passed.
  • A very bad brain problem called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) may happen with this drug. It may cause disability or death. Tell your doctor right away if you have signs like confusion, memory problems, low mood (depression), change in the way you act, change in strength on 1 side is greater than the other, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, or change in eyesight.
  • Some people treated with this drug have had very bad kidney problems caused by a certain viral infection (BK virus). In people who have had a kidney transplant, BK virus infection may cause loss of the kidney. Call your doctor right away if you have signs of kidney problems like change in the amount of urine passed, difficulty or pain when passing urine, or blood in the urine.
  • Very bad and sometimes deadly lung problems have happened with this drug. Call your doctor right away if you have lung or breathing problems like trouble breathing, shortness of breath, or a cough that is new or worse.

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 doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

Shot:

  • Irritation where the shot is given.

All products:

  • Back pain.
  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Headache.
  • Dizziness.
  • Not hungry.
  • Belly pain.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Shakiness.
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Not able to sleep.
  • This drug may cause loose stools (diarrhea). If you get loose stools (diarrhea), talk with your doctor about ways to lower this effect. Do not stop taking this drug without talking with your doctor.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best taken?

Use this drug as ordered by your doctor. Read and follow the dosing on the label closely.

All products:

  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
  • Take as you have been told, even if you feel well.
  • Take this drug at the same time of day.

All oral products:

  • Take on an empty stomach at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals unless your doctor has told you otherwise.
  • Do not take antacids that have magnesium or aluminum at the same time as this drug. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Tablets and capsules:

  • Swallow whole. Do not chew, break, or crush.
  • If you have trouble swallowing, talk with your doctor.

Capsule:

  • If the capsule is opened or broken, do not touch the contents. If the contents are touched or they get in the eyes, wash hands or eyes right away.

Liquid (suspension):

  • Shake well before use.
  • Measure liquid doses carefully. Use the measuring device that comes with this drug.
  • Do not mix with any other liquid drugs.

Shot:

  • It is given as a shot into a vein.
  • Your doctor may teach you how to give the shot.
  • Follow how to use carefully.
  • Do not use if the solution is cloudy, leaking, or has particles.
  • Do not use if solution changes color.
  • Throw away needles in a needle/sharp disposal box. When the box is full, follow all local rules for getting rid of it. Talk with a doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • Do not spill the liquid on the skin. This may irritate the skin.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

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

Tablets and capsules:

  • Store at room temperature.
  • Protect from light.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.

Liquid (suspension):

  • Store liquid (suspension) at room temperature or in a refrigerator. Do not freeze. Throw away any part not used after 2 months.

Shot:

  • Most of the time, this drug will be given in a hospital or doctor’s office. If stored at home, follow how to store as you were told by the doctor.

All products:

  • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.

General drug facts

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else’s drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your 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

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