Leukemia Home > Iclusig Side Effects
If you are taking Iclusig, be aware that this chemotherapy drug often causes side effects, such as high blood pressure, a rash, and constipation. Although there may be ways to help prevent or lessen reactions to this drug, some problems are potentially dangerous and require immediate medical treatment, such as fever, unexplained weight gain, or blood in the urine.
Just like any medicine, Iclusig® (ponatinib) can cause side effects. In fact, most people will experience some type of reaction to this drug, and some side effects 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 Iclusig. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)
Iclusig has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in a group of people taking the 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 Iclusig side effects included:
- High blood pressure (hypertension) -- in up to 71 percent of people
- A rash -- up to 54 percent
- Abdominal (stomach) pain -- up to 49 percent
- Constipation -- up to 47 percent
- Headache -- up to 39 percent
- Fatigue -- up to 39 percent
- Dry skin -- up to 39 percent
- Nausea -- up to 32 percent
- Fever -- up to 32 percent
- Decreased appetite -- up to 31 percent
- Blood clots -- up to 27 percent.
A variety of laboratory abnormalities (typically found using blood tests) were also a common occurrence. Some were quite serious, such as low blood counts.
Other common reactions, occurring in 21 percent to 26 percent of people, included:
- Joint pain
- Fever, along with low white blood cells ("febrile neutropenia")
- Mouth sores
- A severe and dangerous response to an infection ("sepsis")
- Muscle pain
- Swelling and water retention in the arms and legs
- Shortness of breath.