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mycophenolate mofetil (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to mycophenolate mofetil, mycophenolic acid (Myfortic), or to an ingredient called Polysorbate 80.

To make this medication is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have any of these conditions:

  • a stomach ulcer or other disorder of your stomach or intestines;
  • kidney disease;
  • a viral, bacterial, or fungal infection; or
  • Lesch-Nyhan and Kelley-Seegmiller syndrome.

FDA pregnancy category D. Do not use mycophenolate mofetil if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby, especially if used during the first trimester of pregnancy. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant.

If you are a woman of child-bearing potential, you will be required to start using two forms of birth control 4 weeks before the start of your treatment with mycophenolate mofetil. You will also need to have a negative pregnancy test within 1 week before treatment.

Unless you have been in menopause for at least 12 months in a row, you are considered to be of child-bearing potential. Adolescent girls who have entered puberty are also considered to be of child-bearing potential, even if not yet sexually active.

Mycophenolate mofetil can make birth control pills less effective. Use two non-hormone forms of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy before and during your treatment with mycophenolate mofetil, and for at least 6 weeks after your treatment ends.

Although mycophenolate mofetil can cause harm to an unborn baby, not treating the mother after a transplant could pose a greater risk to the mother's health. Mycophenolate mofetil is sometimes given to pregnant women who are unable to take other needed transplant medications. Your doctor will decide whether you should receive this medication.

It is not known whether mycophenolate mofetil passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

The liquid form may contain phenylalanine. Talk to your doctor before using this form of mycophenolate mofetil if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).

How should I use mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept)?

Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

The injection form of this medication is injected into a vein through an IV. Mycophenolate mofetil must be given slowly, and the IV infusion can take at least 2 hours to complete.

Mycophenolate mofetil injection is usually given within 24 hours after your transplant. You may be given the injection for up to 14 days before you switch to the oral (pill) form of mycophenolate mofetil. The oral form is usually given twice a day. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Take oral mycophenolate mofetil on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. Measure the liquid with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Do not open the mycophenolate mofetil capsule or crush or chew a tablet. Do not use a pill that has been accidentally broken. The medicine from a crushed or broken pill can be dangerous if it gets in your eyes, mouth, or nose, or on your skin. If this occurs, wash your skin with soap and water or rinse your eyes with water. Ask your doctor or pharmacist how to safely handle and dispose of a broken tablet or capsule.

Mycophenolate mofetil can lower blood cells that help your body fight infections and help your blood to clot. This can make it easier for you to bleed from an injury or get sick from being around others who are ill. You may also have an increased risk of certain forms of cancer. Your blood may need to be tested on a weekly or monthly basis. Visit your doctor regularly.

If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using mycophenolate mofetil. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. The liquid medicine may be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator. Do not freeze. Throw away any unused liquid that is older than 60 days.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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