TASIGNA (Nilotinib)
TASIGNA (Nilotinib)
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TASIGNA (Nilotinib)

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What is this medication?

TASIGNA (Nilotinib)
Antineoplastic Agent, BCR-ABL Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitor

TASIGNA (Nilotinib) is officially indicated for the treatment of chronic myelogenous leukemia.

Nilotinib prolongs the QT interval. Prior to nilotinib administration and periodically, monitor for hypokalemia or hypomagnesemia and correct deficiencies. Obtain ECGs to monitor the QTc at baseline, 7 days after initiation, and periodically thereafter, and following any dose adjustments. Sudden deaths have been reported in patients receiving nilotinib. Do not administer nilotinib to patients with hypokalemia, hypomagnesemia, or long QT syndrome. Avoid use of concomitant drugs known to prolong the QT interval and strong CYP3A4 inhibitors. Avoid food 2 hours before and 1 hour after taking a nilotinib dose.

How does this medication work?

TASIGNA (Nilotinib) is a selective tyrosine kinase inhibitor that targets BCR-ABL kinase, c-KIT and platelet derived growth factor receptor (PDGFR); it does not have activity against the SRC family. Nilotinib inhibits BCR-ABL mediated proliferation of leukemic cell lines by binding to the ATP-binding site of BCR-ABL and inhibiting tyrosine kinase activity. Nilotinib is cell cycle phase-nonspecific in acts as an immunosuppressive agent.

How should I take this medication?

Oral: Take 400mg twice daily.

How to Take: Take on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after food. Swallow whole, if you are unable to swallow the capsules then you may empty contents into 5 mL applesauce (puréed apple) and administer within 15 minutes (do not save for later use).

What should I watch for while using this medication?

Before starting TASIGNA (Nilotinib) make sure your physician is aware of any allergies or medications you currently take.  Nilotinib can cause myelosuppression and is associated with neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, and anemia. CBC should be done every 2 weeks for the first 2 months, then monthly.  

Nilotinib can cause QT prolongation.  Correct hypokalemia or hypomagnesemia prior to administration and monitor periodically. Avoid drugs known to prolong the QT interval and strong CYP3A4 inhibitors. Obtain ECGs at baseline, seven days after initiation, and periodically afterwards.  Other serious adverse effects associated with Nilotinib include but are not limited to the following: bone marrow suppression, cardiovascular ischemia, QT prolongation, electrolyte disturbances and Tumor lysis syndrome.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of medication, try to take it as soon as possible.  However, if it is almost time for your next dose, take only that scheduled dose.  Do not take double or extra doses.

How should I store this medication?

Keep out of the reach of children at all times.  Store at room temperature, 59 to 86° F (15 to 30° C).  Protect from light.  Keep the container tightly closed.  Properly dispose of any unused medication after the expiration date.

What are the possible side effects of using this medication?

Prolonged QT interval, occlusive arterial disease, peripheral edema, hypertension, headache, dizziness, insomnia, skin rash, pruritis, night sweats, alopecia, xeroderma, nausea, constipation, abdominal pain, anorexia, electrolyte disturbances, muscle and joint pain, cough, nasopharyngitis, upper respiratory tract infection, dyspnea, oropharyngeal pain, fever.

Note this is not a complete list of side effects for TASIGNA (Nilotinib), only common ones.