People with certain types of cancer -- in particular, leukemia, dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans, or a certain kind of gastrointestinal tumor known as GIST -- may treat the condition with a drug called Gleevec® (imatinib mesylate). It works by inhibiting the release of an enzyme that causes cancer cells to grow. Gleevec comes in tablet form, and is taken once or twice a day with food and water. Like most cancer drugs, nausea, diarrhea, and fatigue are possible.
(Click Gleevec to learn more about this drug for cancer, including dosing guidelines, what to do in cases of overdose, generic availability, and more.)
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Gleevec [package insert]. East Hanover, New Jersey: Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation;2013 February.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed October 12, 2011.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 8th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2008.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed October 12, 2011.
National Library of Medicine (US). Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?HSDB. Accessed October 12, 2011.
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