Cyclophosphamide - oral


Patient Medicine Information
Why do I need this medicine?
Cyclophosphamide is used on its own or together with other medicines to treat certain types of cancer.

This medicine may also be used to treat other conditions as decided by your doctor.
How do I take this medicine?
Take Cyclophosphamide exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.

It is best to take this medicine in the morning, on an empty stomach. You may take it with food to reduce any stomach discomfort that it may cause. Try to take it at the same time each day.

Cyclophosphamide is available as a tablet or capsule.

Swallow the tablet or capsule whole with plenty of water. Do not divide, chew or crush the tablet or capsule.

The dose of this medicine will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the course of your treatment depending on the type and severity of your disease and your response to the medication.
What should I do if I have forgotten to take this medicine?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.

DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.

If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
When should I not use this medicine?
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • active infections
  • bone marrow problems
  • bladder problems, including those that were a result of previous chemotherapy or radiation therapy
as Cyclophosphamide may not be suitable for you.

Do not take this medicine if you are pregnant. If you become pregnant while on Cyclophosphamide therapy, alert your doctor immediately. This medicine may cause harm to your unborn child.

Men should not father a child while being treated with this medicine. Both men and women must use proven birth control methods during Cyclophosphamide therapy and for up to 6 months (in men) or 1 year (in women) after stopping the treatment. You may wish to discuss reliable methods of birth control with your doctor.

Do not breastfeed while you are being treated with this medicine and for 1 week after the last dose.
What should I take note of while taking this medicine?
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • previous radiation therapy in the heart area or the abdomen
  • acute porphyria (an inherited disorder that causes skin or nervous system abnormalities)
  • problems with the adrenal glands
  • kidney disease
  • liver disease
Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving this medicine to a child, the elderly or debilitated patient (a person who is physically or mentally weak usually due to illness or old age). Children, elderly people or debilitated patients may be more sensitive to the side effects.

Why is it important to keep my appointments with the doctor?

Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.
  • Pregnancy tests must be done before treatment to know if Cyclophosphamide is suited for you to take.
  • Screening for hepatitis B virus may be done before or at the beginning of therapy.
  • Routine tests (e.g. kidney function, electrolyte levels, complete blood count) may be done while you are being treated with this medicine. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have these tests.
  • Regular monitoring for signs or symptoms of toxic effects in the lungs, heart, kidneys, or liver may also be needed.
What side effects could I experience?
Cyclophosphamide may cause dizziness or blurred vision. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert or need to see clearly.

Other side effects may include any of the following: mouth sores, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, hair loss, skin or nail discolouration, and irregular or absence of menstruation.

Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
  • rashes, breathlessness, swollen mouth or eyes
  • chest pain, irregular heartbeat
  • pain or difficulty in passing urine, blood in urine, changes in the amount of urine being passed
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes, abdominal pain, dark coloured urine, tiredness, swelling in the legs and ankles
  • new or worsening cough with shortness of breath and fever
This medicine will cause the level of your red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets to drop.

Red blood cells carry oxygen around your body. A fall in the level of red blood cells may make you feel tired and worn out.

White blood cells help your body to fight infections. A fall in the level of your white blood cells may put you at higher risk for infections, such as coughs, colds and flu, which may lead to more serious infections. Avoid crowded places and people who are sick. Alert your doctor if you have a fever, or a cough or flu that does not go away.

Platelets help your blood to clot when there is a cut in the skin. A fall in the level of your platelets may put you at risk of bleeding more than usual. Do not take part in activities where you may fall or get injured, such as contact sports. Alert your doctor if you get any unusual bruising (large bruises or several bruises, especially if the bruises appeared on their own) or bleeding that takes a long time to stop (for example, too much bleeding when you floss or brush your teeth).

Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Can I take this with other medicines?
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking or using any of these medicines:
  • other medicines for cancer e.g. busulfan, paclitaxel, thiotepa, pentostatin
  • blood-thinning medicines e.g. warfarin, prasugrel
  • medicines to treat fungal infections e.g. fluconazole, itraconazole, amphotericin B
  • medicines for HIV infection e.g. ritonavir, saquinavir, nevirapine
  • certain antibiotics e.g. ciprofloxacin, sulfamethoxazole, metronidazole, chloramphenicol
  • NSAIDs (medicines for pain and inflammation) e.g. indometacin
  • medicines for epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. phenytoin, phenobarbital
  • medicines for irregular heartbeat e.g. amiodarone, digoxin
  • aprepitant (medicine for nausea and vomiting)
  • allopurinol (medicine for gout or high uric acid level in the blood)
  • hydrochlorothiazide (water pill or medicine for water retention)
  • suxamethonium (muscle relaxant used during surgery)
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Cyclophosphamide.

Avoid vaccinations with live vaccines during treatment with this medicine. Inform your doctor if you have been recently vaccinated or if you are planning to get vaccinated.

Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicine, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Avoid alcohol. Alcohol intake may worsen nausea and vomiting caused by Cyclophosphamide.
How should I store this medicine?
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.

Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.

As this is a cancer medicine, always return any unused or expired tablets or capsules to the clinic, hospital, or pharmacy for disposal. Do not throw it away in the household waste.
This information is independently developed by MIMS based on cyclophosphamide - oral and is provided for your reference only. It is not a replacement for and should only be used in conjunction with full consultation with a licensed healthcare professional, the information provided by your pharmacist and/or the manufacturer of the medication. It may not contain all the available information you require and cannot substitute professional medical care, nor does it take into account all individual circumstances. Although great effort has been made to ensure content accuracy, we shall not be held responsible or liable for any claims or damages arising from the use or misuse of the information contained herein, its contents or omissions, or otherwise. Copyright © 2022 MIMS. All rights reserved. Powered by MIMS.com
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