Warning: Mitoxantrone is a drug that should only ever be taken
intravenously. It should never be injected under the skin, into a
muscle, or into the spinal cord. Due to the nature of this medication,
it should only be administered by a doctor who is experienced with the use of drugs related to
chemotherapy. Infrequently, this medication causes heart problems, including
heart failure, though this is rarely fatal.
This may occur during the course of treatment or years afterwards.
Very rarely, patients receiving Mitoxantrone have developed secondary cancers.
Mitoxantrone is a drug used to treat leukemia and prostate cancer; when used to treat leukemia, Mitoxantrone is
used in combination with other drugs. Mitoxantrone might be combined with steroids to relieve the pain of advanced
prostate cancer when that cancer hasn’t responded to any other treatments. It is part of the anthracenedione drug class and works by slowing or stopping the
growth and spread of certain cells, including cancer cells.
Mitoxantrone may also be used to treat multiple sclerosis. When used
in this way, Mitoxantrone will stop certain cells associated with the body’s immune system from reaching the spinal
cord and brain and causing damage.
Additionally, Mitoxantrone is used in the treatment of
the following cancers:
lymphoma (cancer of lymph cells).
will receive each dose of Mitoxantrone in a hospital or clinic under the administration of a nurse or doctor.
This is because Mitoxantrone is a drug that is injected into a vein (intravenously). Mitoxantrone will also need
to be prepared before it is given to you. The FDA has stated that
you should not give this medication to yourself.
Mitoxantrone injection is being used in the treatment of leukemia, you will receive this drug on an ongoing
basis based on your condition and how well you respond to the treatment. Patients receiving Mitoxantrone as part
of the treatment for prostate cancer will usually be given a dose every 21 days. If Mitoxantrone is being used
to treat multiple sclerosis, it usually is administered once every three months for two to three years (for a
total of eight to twelve doses). Be aware that Mitoxantrone is a treatment for multiple sclerosis, not a
Overdose: overdosing Mitoxantrone can lead
to serious health problems. Even at normal dose, Mitoxantrone can severely damage the bone marrow, and cause a
decrease in white blood cells and platelets. Mitoxantrone may also cause kidney damage and /or serious heart
problems, even years after the treatment has ended. In fragile patients, Mitoxantrone can lead to death.
Although rare, Mitoxantrone increase the risk for developing leukemia in some patients. The risk is higher when
the drug is taken in high dose or in combination with other chemotherapy medications.
adverse effects vary from one patient to another; no physician can tell how your body is going to react to
Mitoxantrone. Therefore, to reduce the risk of complications, avoid anything that might weaken your immune
system and the risk of infection. During the treatment, keep all appointments with your doctor. Contact your
doctor immediately if you experience any symptom that indicates complications (see side effects below).
Interactions: Some medications
that may interact with Mitoxantrone include natalizumab and other cancer drugs. This is not a complete list of possible drug interactions, so be sure to tell
your doctor about any other medications you are taken now or have recently taken. Drug interactions can cause
severe side effects or may cause Mitoxantrone to not be as effective.
Contraindications: If you
have any of the following conditions, tell your doctor before beginning to take Mitoxantrone: Therapy-related
acute leukemia, chronic heart failure, infection caused by a virus, liver problems, severe liver disease,
seizures, pregnancy, anemia, or decreased white blood cells. This
is not a complete list of contraindications, so discuss any questions with your doctor.
Side effects: Mitoxantrone not only attack cancer cells but also non
malignant cells, which
often leads to adverse effects in most patients; most common Mitoxantrone side effects include:
discoloration of urine
in the mouth and lips
whites of the eyes
If the side
effects above persist for weeks, contact your oncologist. In addition, contact your doctor immediately if you
experience any of these symptoms:
unusual bleeding or bruising
small red or purple dots on the skin
infection signs such as hives, itching, rash, etc.
shortness of breath
yellowing of the skin or eyes
Redness, pain, swelling or burning at the injection site