Bortezomib (Injection)

Introduction

Bortezomib (bor-TEZ-oh-mib)

Treats multiple myeloma (blood plasma cell cancer) and mantle cell lymphoma (lymph node cancer).

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Velcade

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not receive this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to bortezomib, boron, or mannitol, or if you are pregnant.

How to Use This Medicine

Injectable

  • Medicines used to treat cancer are very strong and can have many side effects. Before receiving this medicine, make sure you understand all the risks and benefits. It is important for you to work closely with your doctor during your treatment.
  • Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given through a needle placed in one of your veins.
  • You will receive this medicine while you are in a hospital or cancer treatment center. A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
  • You may also receive medicines to help prevent nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. Ask your doctor or other health caregiver if you should drink extra water while you are using this medicine. This could help you avoid feeling dizzy or lightheaded.

If a dose is missed:

  • This medicine needs to be given on a fixed schedule. If you miss a dose, call your doctor, home health caregiver, or treatment clinic for instructions.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using amiodarone (Cordarone®), isoniazid, ketoconazole (Nizoral®), nitrofurantoin (Macrodantin®), blood pressure medicine (such as atenolol, lisinopril, metoprolol, Accupril®, Toprol®, or Zestril®), diuretics or "water pills" (such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide, or Hyzaar®), oral medicine for diabetes (such as glyburide, metformin, Avandia®, or Glucotrol®), medicine to lower cholesterol (such as atorvastatin or Lipitor®), or medicine to treat HIV or AIDS (such as didanosine, lamivudine, ritonavir, stavudine, zidovudine, Combivir®, Epivir®, or Kaletra®).
  • Tell your doctor if you have used any other medicine that might cause nerve problems.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
  • Do not breastfeed while you are using this medicine.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you have heart disease, liver disease, lung disease, diabetes, a history of fainting or low blood pressure, herpes virus infection, or have ever had a nerve problem called peripheral neuropathy.
  • This medicine may cause serious heart problems. Tell your doctor right away if you have chest pain or discomfort, shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, or swelling of the feet, ankles, or legs while you are using this medicine.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert. You may feel lightheaded when standing, so stand up slowly.
  • This medicine may increase your chance of having a brain condition called reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome (RPLS). Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you start having headaches, seizures, extreme drowsiness, confusion, or problems with vision while you are using this medicine.
  • This medicine lowers the number of some types of blood cells in your body. Because of this, you may bleed or get infections more easily. To help with these problems, avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Wash your hands often. Stay away from rough sports or other situations where you could be bruised, cut, or injured. Brush and floss your teeth gently. Be careful when using sharp objects, including razors and fingernail clippers.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
  • Cancer medicines can cause nausea and/or vomiting in most people, sometimes even after receiving medicines to prevent it. Ask your doctor or nurse about other ways to control these side effects.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Blistering, peeling, or red skin rash.
  • Change in how much and how often you urinate, or painful urination.
  • Confusion, weakness, and muscle twitching.
  • Dry mouth, increased thirst, or muscle cramps.
  • Fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat.
  • Fever, chills, cough, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, and body aches.
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, drowsiness, or fainting.
  • Numbness or weakness in your arm or leg, or on one side of your body.
  • Numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your hands, arms, legs, or feet.
  • Pain in your lower leg (calf).
  • Red or dark brown urine.
  • Seizures, tremors, or stiff neck.
  • Severe diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
  • Shortness of breath, chest pain, cold sweats, coughing up blood, or bluish-colored skin.
  • Sudden or severe headache, problems with vision, speech, or walking.
  • Sudden or severe stomach pain and tenderness, red or black stools, or rectal bleeding.
  • Swelling in your face, arms, legs, ankles, or feet.
  • Trouble swallowing.
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising.
  • Vomiting of blood or coffee-ground materials.
  • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Anxiety, mood or behavior changes.
  • Back pain, bone pain, joint pain, or muscle pain.
  • Constipation or upset stomach.
  • Decreased or loss of appetite.
  • Eye redness or itching.
  • Loss or change in taste.
  • Mild headache.
  • Mild skin rash or itching.
  • Pain in arms or legs.
  • Pain, itching, burning, swelling, or a lump under your skin where the needle is placed.
  • Tiredness.
  • Trouble sleeping.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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