Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

bendamustine

Pronunciation: BEN da MUS teen

Brand: Belrapzo, Bendeka, Treanda

What is the most important information I should know about bendamustine?

Tell your caregivers right away if you have any type of skin rash after being treated with bendamustine.

What is bendamustine?

Bendamustine is used to treat chronic lymphocytic leukemia. Bendamustine is also used to treat indolent B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma after other medicines have been tried without successful treatment of this condition.

Bendamustine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before I receive bendamustine?

You should not be treated with this medicine if you are allergic to bendamustine, polyethylene glycol, propylene glycol, or mannitol (Osmitrol).

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • a weak immune system;
  • fever or other signs of infection;
  • tuberculosis;
  • herpes zoster (also called shingles)
  • a metabolic disorder or electrolyte imbalance;
  • liver disease;
  • kidney disease; or
  • if you smoke.

Using bendamustine may increase your risk of developing certain types of cancer. Ask your doctor about this risk.

Do not use bendamustine if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby or cause birth defects. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are using this medicine and for at least 3 months after your last dose.

You should not breastfeed while using bendamustine.

How is bendamustine given?

Bendamustine is given as an infusion into a vein. A healthcare provider will give you this injection.

Bendamustine is usually given for 2 days in a row every 21 to 28 days. Your doctor will determine how long to treat you with this medicine.

You may be given other medications to help prevent certain side effects of bendamustine.

Tell your caregivers if you feel any burning, pain, or swelling around the IV needle when the medicine is injected.

Bendamustine affects your immune system. You may get infections more easily, even serious or fatal infections. Your doctor will need to examine you on a regular basis.

If you've ever had hepatitis B, using bendamustine can cause this virus to become active or get worse. You may need frequent liver function tests while using this medicine and for several months after you stop.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your bendamustine injection.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while receiving bendamustine?

Avoid driving or hazardous activity until you know how this medicine will affect you. Your reactions could be impaired.

This medicine can pass into body fluids (urine, feces, vomit). For at least 48 hours after you receive a dose, avoid allowing your body fluids to come into contact with your hands or other surfaces. Caregivers should wear rubber gloves while cleaning up a patient's body fluids, handling contaminated trash or laundry or changing diapers. Wash hands before and after removing gloves. Wash soiled clothing and linens separately from other laundry.

What are the possible side effects of bendamustine?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning in your eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling).

Seek medical treatment if you have a serious drug reaction that can affect many parts of your body. Symptoms may include: skin rash, fever, swollen glands, muscle aches, severe weakness, unusual bruising, or yellowing of your skin or eyes.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • fever, chills, or itching during or shortly after the injection;
  • pain, swelling, redness, skin changes, or signs of infection where the medicine was injected;
  • severe ongoing nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea;
  • liver problems --right-sided upper stomach pain, vomiting, loss of appetite, yellowing of your skin or eyes, and not feeling well;
  • low blood cell counts --fever, chills, tiredness, mouth sores, skin sores, easy bruising, unusual bleeding, pale skin, cold hands and feet, feeling light-headed or short of breath; or
  • signs of tumor cell breakdown --confusion, weakness, muscle cramps, nausea, vomiting, fast or slow heart rate, decreased urination, tingling in your hands and feet or around your mouth.

Your cancer treatments may be delayed if you have certain side effects.

Common side effects may include:

  • fever, cough, mouth sores, trouble breathing;
  • low blood cell counts;
  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation;
  • headache, tiredness;
  • rash; or
  • loss of appetite, weight loss.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect bendamustine?

Sometimes it is not safe to use certain medications at the same time. Some drugs can affect your blood levels of other drugs you take, which may increase side effects or make the medications less effective.

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:

  • allopurinol.

This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect bendamustine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.

Where can I get more information?

Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about bendamustine.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2019 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 7.02. Revision date: 9/16/2019.

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