Carmustine injection is used to treat certain types of brain tumors. Carmustine injection is also used along with prednisone to treat multiple myeloma (a type of cancer of the bone marrow). It is also used with other medications to treat Hodgkin’s lymphoma (Hodgkin’s disease) and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (cancer that begins in the cells of the immune system) that has not improved or that has worsened after treatment with other medications. Carmustine is in a class of medications called alkylating agents. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells in your body.
Side Effects Of Carmustine
Carmustine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- loss of balance or coordination
- pale skin
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- chest pain
- darkened skin
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms or those listed in the WARNING section, call your doctor immediately:
- swelling, pain, redness, or burning at the injection site
- upset stomach
- extreme tiredness or weakness
- lack of energy
- loss of appetite
- pain in the upper right part of the stomach
- yellowing of the skin or eyes
- decreased urination
- swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
Carmustine injection may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Carmustine may increase the risk that you will develop other cancers. Talk to your doctor about the risk(s) of receiving carmustine injection.
Warnings & Precautions
Before receiving carmustine injection:
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to carmustine or any of the ingredients in carmustine injection. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: cimetidine (Tagamet) and phenytoin (Dilantin). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects. Other medications may also interact with carmustine, 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 or have ever had kidney or liver disease.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. You should not become pregnant while you are receiving carmustine injection. If you become pregnant while receiving carmustine, call your doctor. Carmustine may harm the fetus.
Carmustine injection comes as a powder to be added to fluid and injected over at least 2 hours intravenously (into a vein) by a doctor or nurse in a medical office or hospital outpatient clinic. It is usually injected once every 6 weeks. It may also be injected in smaller doses once a day for 2 days in a row every 6 weeks.
Your doctor may need to delay your treatment or adjust your dose if you experience certain side effects. It is important for you to tell your doctor how you are feeling during your treatment with carmustine.
Ask your pharmacist or doctor for a copy of the manufacturer’s information for the patient.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
All information has been provided courtesy of MedLinePlus from the National Library of Medicine and from the FDA.