panitumumab (generic name)

It targets a specific protein within cancer cells and stops the cells from growing
(pan i TOOM ue mab)
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What is this medicine?

PANITUMUMAB (pan i TOOM ue mab) is a chemotherapy drug. It targets a specific protein within cancer cells and stops the cells from growing. It is used to treat colorectal cancer.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • lung disease, especially lung fibrosis
  • skin conditions or sensitivity
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to panitumumab, mouse proteins, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This drug is given as an infusion into a vein. It is administered in a hospital or clinic by a specially trained health care professional.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

It is important not to miss your dose. Call your doctor or health care professional if you are unable to keep an appointment.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • some medicines for cancer

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor for checks on your progress. This drug may make you feel generally unwell. This is not uncommon, as chemotherapy can affect healthy cells as well as cancer cells. Report any side effects. Continue your course of treatment even though you feel ill unless your doctor tells you to stop.

This medicine can make you more sensitive to the sun. Keep out of the sun while receiving this medicine and for 2 months after the last dose. If you cannot avoid being in the sun, wear protective clothing and use sunscreen. Do not use sun lamps or tanning beds/booths.

In some cases, you may be given additional medicines to help with side effects. Follow all directions for their use.

Call your doctor or health care professional for advice if you get a fever, chills or sore throat, or other symptoms of a cold or flu. Do not treat yourself. This drug decreases your body's ability to fight infections. Try to avoid being around people who are sick.

Avoid taking products that contain aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen, or ketoprofen unless instructed by your doctor. These medicines may hide a fever.

Do not become pregnant while taking this medicine and for 6 months after the last dose. Women should inform their doctor if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. Men should not father a child while taking this medicine and for 6 months after the last dose. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information. Do not breast-feed an infant while taking this medicine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • breathing problems
  • changes in vision
  • fast, irregular heartbeat
  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
  • fever, chills
  • mouth sores
  • swelling of the ankles, feet, hands
  • unusually weak or tired

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • changes in skin like acne, cracks, skin dryness
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • eyelash growth
  • headache
  • nail changes
  • nausea, vomiting
  • stomach upset

Where should I keep my medicine?

This drug is given in a hospital or clinic and will not be stored at home.

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.

Last Updated: May 15, 2012
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