Busulfan Injection : Uses, Side Effects, Interactions & More

IMPORTANT WARNING:

Busulfan injection can cause a severe decrease in the number of blood cells in the bone marrow. Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the medicines you are taking. If you receive busulfan with other medications that can cause a low blood count, the side effects of the medications may be more serious. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: fever, sore throat, ongoing cough and congestion, or other signs of infection; unusual bleeding or bruising.

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order laboratory tests before, during, and after your treatment to check your body’s response to busulfan to see if your blood cells are affected by this medicine.

Busulfan can increase your risk of developing other cancers. Talk to your doctor about the risks of receiving busulfan.

Why is this medication prescribed?

Busulfan injection is used to treat a certain type of chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML; a type of cancer of the white blood cells) in combination with other medications to destroy bone marrow and cancer cells in preparation for a bone marrow transplant. Busulfan belongs to a class of medications called alkylating agents. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells in your body.

Other uses for this medicine

Busulfan injection is also used in combination with other medications to destroy bone marrow and cancer cells in preparation for a bone marrow transplant in people with other types of cancer.

This medicine may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

What special precautions should I follow?

Before receiving busulfan injection,

  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to busulfan, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in busulfan injection. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
  • Tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: acetaminophen (Tylenol); clozapine (Clozaril, FazaClo); cyclosporine (Sandimmune, Gengraf, Neoral); itraconazole (Sporanox); medications for mental illness and nausea; or meperidine (Demerol). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you closely for side effects. Many other medications can also interact with busulfan, so be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you are taking, even those that do not appear on this list.
  • Tell your doctor if you have previously received radiation therapy or other chemotherapy, or if you have ever had a seizure or a head injury.
  • You should know that busulfan can interfere with the normal menstrual cycle (period) in women, can stop sperm production in men, and can cause infertility (difficulty getting pregnant). However, you should not assume that you or your partner cannot get pregnant. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. You should not plan to have children while you are receiving chemotherapy or for a time after treatments. (Talk to your doctor for more details). Use a reliable method of birth control to prevent pregnancy. If you become pregnant while receiving busulfan, call your doctor immediately. Busulfan can harm the fetus.
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What side effects can this medication cause?

Busulfan may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • nausea
  • diarrhea
  • loss of appetite
  • weight loss
  • constipation
  • sores in the mouth and throat
  • dry mouth
  • headache
  • difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • feeling unusually anxious or worried
  • dizziness
  • swelling of the face, arms, hands, feet, ankles or lower legs
  • chest pain
  • joint, muscle or back pain
  • rash
  • itching and dry skin
  • darkened skin
  • hair loss

Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms or those listed in the IMPORTANT WARNING section, call your doctor immediately:

  • black, tarry stools
  • red urine
  • vomiting
  • stomach pain
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • difficulty breathing
  • seizures

Busulfan can cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while receiving this medicine.

If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor can submit a report online to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

This medication will be stored in the hospital or medical facility where you receive each dose

In case of emergency/overdose

What other information should I know?

Keep all your appointments with your doctor.

It is important that you keep a written list of all prescription and over-the-counter (over-the-counter) medications you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should take this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you go into hospital. It is also important information to take with you in case of emergencies.

Brand Names

  • Busulfex® Injection

Other Names

  • Busulphan

Disclaimer: DrLinex has made every effort to ensure that all information is factually accurate, comprehensive and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a licensed health care professional’s choice of knowledge and expertise. You should always consult your doctor or other health care professional before taking any medication. The information given here is subject to change and it has not been used to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions or adverse effects. The lack of warning or other information for any drug does not indicate that the combination of medicine or medication is safe, effective or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.

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