Table of Contents > Drug > Pemetrexed Print

Pemetrexed

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Notes
Related terms
Uses
Dosing
Safety
Author information

Notes

    Related terms
    • Brand Names: U.S.: Alimta®
    • Brand Names: Canada: Alimta®
    • Mexican Brand Names: Alimta
    • Pharmacologic Category: Antineoplastic Agent, Antimetabolite;Antineoplastic Agent, Antimetabolite (Antifolate)

    Uses
    • It is used to treat lung cancer.
    • Pemetrexed harms cancer cells causing their death.

    Dosing

    How to take

    • It is given as a shot into a vein.
    • Drink lots of noncaffeine liquids unless told to drink less liquid by your doctor.

    Missed Dose

    • Call your doctor for an office visit.

    Storage

    • This drug will be given to you in a hospital or doctor's office. You will not store it at home.

    Safety



    Avoid

    • If you have an allergy to pemetrexed or any other part of this drug.
    • If you are pregnant or may be pregnant.
    • If you are breast-feeding.

    Precautions

    • Take folic acid 1 week before, during, and for 3 weeks after your care.
    • Your doctor will give you a vitamin B12 shot 1 week before and every 9 weeks during your care.
    • You will be given a drug that will help stop you from getting a skin rash while getting this drug. Talk with your doctor.
    • If you have kidney disease, talk with your doctor.
    • Have your blood work checked often. Talk with your doctor.
    • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that you use this drug.
    • Check all drugs you are taking with your doctor. This drug may not mix well with some other drugs.
    • Talk with your doctor before using other aspirin, products that have aspirin, blood thinners, garlic, ginseng, ginkgo, ibuprofen or like products, pain drugs, or vitamin E.
    • You may bleed more easily. Be careful and avoid injury. Use a soft toothbrush and an electric razor.
    • Use birth control that you can trust to stop pregnancy while taking this drug.

    Side Effects

    • Chance of getting an infection. Avoid people with infections, colds, or flu.
    • Anemia, low white blood cell count, and low platelet count.
    • Feeling tired or weak.
    • Upset stomach or throwing up. Many small meals, good mouth care, sucking hard, sugar-free candy, or chewing sugar-free gum may help.
    • Not hungry.
    • Mouth irritation. Using a soft toothbrush or cotton swabs and rinsing the mouth may help.
    • Sore throat.
    • Swelling.
    • Loose stools.
    • Skin irritation.

    Contact a healthcare provider

    • If you think there was an overdose, call your local poison control center or ER right away.
    • Signs of a very bad reaction to the drug. These include wheezing; chest tightness; fever; itching; bad cough; blue skin color; seizures; or swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat.
    • Signs of infection. These include a fever of 100.5°F (38°C) or higher, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, wound that will not heal, or anal itching or pain.
    • Chest pain or pressure.
    • Trouble breathing.
    • Very upset stomach or throwing up.
    • Very loose stools.
    • Any bruising or bleeding.
    • Feeling very tired or weak.
    • Any rash.
    • For women, if you get pregnant while taking this drug.
    • Health problem is not better or you are feeling worse.

    General Statements

    • If you have a very bad allergy, wear an allergy ID at all times.
    • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
    • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
    • Most drugs may be thrown away in household trash after mixing with coffee grounds or kitty litter and sealing in a plastic bag.
    • In Canada, take any unused drugs to the pharmacy. Also, visit http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hl-vs/iyh-vsv/med/disposal-defaire-eng.php#th to learn about the right way to get rid of unused drugs.
    • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
    • Call your doctor for help with any side effects. If in the U.S., you may also call the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or if in Canada, you may also call Health Canada's Vigilance Program at 1-866-234-2345.
    • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including OTC, natural products, or vitamins.

    Author information
    • Copyright © 1978-2010 Lexi-Comp Inc. All rights reserved.

    Copyright © 2011 Natural Standard (www.naturalstandard.com)


    The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.

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