Nipent and Pregnancy
It is typically not recommended for women to receive Nipent (pentostatin) during pregnancy, due to the potential harm it may cause to an unborn child. Although this chemotherapy drug has not been adequately studied in pregnant women, animal studies have shown it can cause miscarriages, birth defects, and other problems. Women are usually advised to use an effective birth control during Nipent treatment.
Nipent® (pentostatin) is a prescription chemotherapy medication used in the treatment of hairy cell leukemia, a type of cancer that affects the blood cells. Nipent is a pregnancy Category D medicine, meaning it may cause harm to your unborn child.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category D is a classification given to medicines that have been shown to present a risk to the fetus in studies of pregnant women, but may still offer benefits that outweigh the risks the drug presents.
A pregnancy Category D medicine may still be given to a pregnant woman if her healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the woman outweigh the possible risks to her unborn child.
Nipent caused birth defects when given to pregnant rats and mice, including defects of the bones and the abdominal (stomach) wall. The drug did not appear to cause birth defects in rabbits, but did increase the risk for miscarriages and premature delivery. Nipent has not been adequately studied in pregnant women.
Nipent is generally not recommended for use in pregnant women. Women of childbearing potential should avoid becoming pregnant by using an effective form of birth control during Nipent treatment. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best birth control options for your particular situation.