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Caspofungin (Intravenous route)

Pronunciation:

kas-poe-FUN-jin

Brand Names:

  • Cancidas

Dosage Forms:

  • Powder for Solution

Classifications:

Therapeutic—

Antifungal

Pharmacologic—

Glucan Synthesis Inhibitor

Chemical—

Echinocandin

Uses of This Medicine:

Caspofungin injection is used to treat serious fungal infections, including candidemia (fungal infection in the blood), esophageal candidiasis (fungal infection of the esophagus), other candida infections, and aspergillosis (fungal infection in the lungs). It is also used to treat fungal infections assumed to be present in patients with febrile neutropenia. Caspofungin injection is given when other medicines (eg, amphotericin B, itraconazole) did not work well.

This medicine is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of your doctor.

Before Using This Medicine:

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies—

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Children—

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of caspofungin injection in children 3 months of age and older. Safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 3 months of age.

Older adults—

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of caspofungin injection in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more sensitive to the effects of this medicine than younger adults.

Pregnancy—

Pregnancy CategoryExplanation
All TrimestersCAnimal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.

Breast-feeding—

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Other medicines—

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Cyclosporine
  • Tacrolimus

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Carbamazepine
  • Dexamethasone
  • Efavirenz
  • Fosphenytoin
  • Nevirapine
  • Phenytoin
  • Rifampin

Other interactions—

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other medical problems—

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Liver disease, moderate to severe (eg, hepatitis, liver failure)—Use with caution. Effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.

Proper Use of This Medicine:

A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine. It is given through a needle placed into one of your veins. The medicine must be injected slowly, so the needle will have to remain in place for about 1 hour for 7 to 14 days.

Precautions While Using This Medicine:

It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child while you are taking this medicine to make sure the medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

Check with your doctor right away if you or your child have pain or tenderness in the upper stomach, dark urine, pale stools, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, or yellow skin or eyes. These could be symptoms of a serious liver problem.

This medicine may cause a serious type of allergic reaction, called anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Call your doctor right away if you or your child have a rash, itching, hoarseness, trouble breathing, trouble swallowing, or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth after receiving this medicine.

Serious skin reactions can occur with this medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you have blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin, red skin lesions, severe acne or a skin rash, sores or ulcers on the skin, or fever or chills with this medicine.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Side Effects of This Medicine:

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common
Bloating or swelling of the face, arms, hands, lower legs, or feet
blue lips, fingernails, or skin
blurred vision
changes in skin color
chest pain
confusion
cough
cracked lips
decreased urine
diarrhea
difficult or troubled breathing
difficulty with swallowing
dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
dry mouth
fever
headache
increased thirst
irregular heartbeat
irregular, fast, slow, or shallow breathing
loss of appetite
mood changes
muscle pain or cramps
nausea
nervousness
numbness or tingling in your hands, feet, or lips
pain or redness at the injection site
pain, tenderness, or swelling of the foot or leg
pale skin
pounding in the ears
rapid weight gain
seizures
slow or fast heartbeat
sneezing
sore throat
sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips, tongue, or inside the mouth
sweating
tightness in the chest
troubled breathing with exertion
unusual bleeding or bruising
unusual tiredness or weakness
unusual weight gain or loss
vomiting
Less common
Bloody urine
decreased frequency or amount of urine
increased blood pressure
lower back or side pain
weight gain
yellow eyes or skin
Incidence not known
Black, tarry stools
bladder pain
bleeding gums
blood in the urine or stools
bloody nose
chest pain or discomfort
clay-colored stools
cloudy urine
constipation
dark urine
decreased appetite
depression
drowsiness
fever with or without chills
flushed, dry skin
frequent urge to urinate
fruit-like breath odor
general feeling of tiredness or weakness
incoherent speech
increased hunger
increased urination
indigestion
itching
light-colored stools
metallic taste
muscle spasms (tetany) or twitching seizures
muscle weakness
no blood pressure or pulse
noisy, rattling breathing
pain or discomfort in the arms, jaw, back, or neck
pains in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
pinpoint red spots on the skin
rapid weight gain
rash
right upper abdominal or stomach pain and fullness
shakiness in the legs, arms, hands, or feet
stomach pain, continuous
stomach pain or tenderness
stopping of heart
trembling or shaking of the hands or feet
troubled breathing at rest
ulcers, sores, or white spots in the mouth
unconsciousness
unexplained weight loss
unpleasant breath odor
vomiting of blood
weakness
weight loss

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common
Flushing, redness of the skin
unusually warm skin
Incidence not known
Back pain
belching
blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
bloated or feeling of fullness
bumps on the skin
difficulty in moving
dry, red, hot, or irritated skin
fear
flaking and falling off of the skin
heartburn
hives or welts
indigestion
joint or muscle pain
lack or loss of strength
muscle pain or stiffness
pressure in the stomach
red skin lesions, often with a purple center
red, irritated eyes
redness of the skin
sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
small red or purple spots on the skin
stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
swelling of the abdominal or stomach area
trouble sleeping

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Last Updated: 9/4/2017
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