Pegaspargase (By injection)
Treats acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and in patients with serious allergic reactions from previous treatment with L-asparaginase.
Brand Name(s):There may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:This medicine is not right for everyone. You should not receive it if you had an allergic reaction to pegaspargase, or if you have severe liver disease or a history of blood clots, pancreatitis (swelling of the pancreas), or bleeding problems caused by a previous L-asparaginase treatment.
How to Use This Medicine:
- Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given as a shot into a muscle or through a needle place into one of your veins.
- 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.
- You may also receive other medicines (including allergy medicine, fever medicine, stomach medicine) 30 to 60 minutes before receiving the injection to help prevent unwanted effects.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid:
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
- Some medicines can affect how pegaspargase works. Tell your doctor if you are using a steroid medicine (including dexamethasone).
Warnings While Using This Medicine:
- It is not safe to take this medicine during pregnancy. It could harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. If you are a woman who can get pregnant, your doctor may do tests to make sure you are not pregnant before starting this medicine. Birth control pills may not work as well to prevent pregnancy when used with this medicine. Use another form of birth control (including condoms or spermicide) along with your pills during treatment and for at least 3 months after the last dose.
- Do not breastfeed during treatment with this medicine and for at least 1 month after the last dose.
- Tell your doctor if you have diabetes.
- This medicine may cause the following problems:
- Blood clots
- Pancreatitis, which may be life-threatening
- Increased risk of glucose intolerance, including high blood sugar
- Liver problems
- This medicine lowers the number of certain blood cells, so you may bleed or bruise more easily. Be careful to avoid injuries.
- 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.
- Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
- Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
- Chest pain, trouble breathing, coughing up blood
- Dark urine or pale stools, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, stomach pain, yellow skin or eyes
- Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, body aches
- Increased hunger, thirst, or how much or how often you urinate
- Numbness or weakness in your arm or leg, or on one side of your body, pain in your lower leg
- Sudden and severe stomach pain, lightheadedness
- Sudden or severe headache, problems with vision, speech, or walking
- Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Pain, itching, burning, swelling, or a lump under your skin where the needle was placed or shot given
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
Last Updated: 8/5/2022