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.
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.
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.
This medicine is given slowly, so the needle will remain in place for about 2 hours.
Drink extra fluids so you will pass more urine while you are using this medicine. This will keep your kidneys working well and help prevent kidney problems.
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.
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.
Make sure your doctor knows if you are breast-feeding, or if you have liver disease or lung disease.
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.
Because of the possible side effects from this medicine, the doctor or nurse may want to observe you for several hours after you have received gemtuzumab. They may want to check your temperature and blood pressure, as well as your blood cells for unwanted effects. You may be given other medicines to treat or prevent the side effects.
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.