Leukemia Home > Clolar Side Effects

If you are receiving treatment with Clolar and experience nosebleeds, fever, or yellowing of the whites of the eyes or skin, contact your healthcare provider right away. Dangerous problems can occur with this chemotherapy drug, so it is important to know which reactions require urgent medical treatment. Some of the other possible side effects of Clolar include nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.


An Introduction to Clolar Side Effects

As with any chemotherapy medicine, Clolar® (clofarabine) can cause side effects. In fact, most people will experience some type of reaction to this drug, and some problems can be quite significant. Talk to your healthcare provider about ways to prevent or lessen reactions to this medicine.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Clolar. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)

Common Side Effects With Clolar

Clolar has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in children who received this drug were carefully documented. As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred and how often they appeared.
In these studies, the most common reactions to Clolar included:
  • Low white blood cells, which could increase the risk for infections (see Chemotherapy and Infections) -- in up to 87.7 percent of children
  • Anemia (low red blood cells) -- up to 83.3 percent (see Chemotherapy and Anemia)
  • A decrease in platelets, which could increase the risk for bleeding (see Blood Clotting Problems and Chemotherapy) -- up to 80.7 percent
  • Vomiting -- up to 78.3 percent
  • Nausea -- up to 73 percent
  • Diarrhea -- up to 55.7 percent
  • Headache -- up to 42.6 percent
  • Itching -- up to 42.6 percent
  • Fever -- up to 39.1 percent
  • Rash -- up to 38.3 percent.
Other common side effects, occurring in 5.2 percent to 34.8 percent of people, included:
  • Increased heart rate (tachycardia)
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain
  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nosebleeds
  • Small red or purple spots on the skin
  • Low blood pressure (hypotension)
  • Anxiety
  • Inflammation, sores, or ulcers in the mouth or throat (see Mouth and Gum Problems During Chemotherapy)
  • Tingling, redness, or dryness of the skin on the hands or feet
  • Sudden warmth and redness of the face, neck, or chest area (flushing)
  • Bleeding of the gums
  • General pain
  • Back, arm, and leg pain
  • Muscle, joint, and bone pain
  • Swelling of the arms, hands, legs, ankles, feet, or other body areas
  • Infections
  • Lack of strength and energy
  • Fungal infection in the mouth
  • Lethargy and drowsiness
  • Blood in the urine
  • Breathing problems, such as shortness of breath
  • Chest pain or painful breathing
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Rectal pain
  • Irritability and agitation
  • Yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes (jaundice).
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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