Arsenic Trioxide (By injection)
Antineoplastic Agent (About this – PubMed Health)
Uses of This Medicine
Arsenic trioxide injection is used to treat a type of leukemia (cancer of the blood cells) called acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL) in patients who have not responded to other medication regimens. It may also be used to treat other kinds of cancer, as determined by your doctor.
Arsenic trioxide belongs to the general group of medicines called antineoplastics. It interferes with the growth of cancer cells, which are eventually destroyed. Since the growth of normal body cells may also be affected by arsenic trioxide, other unwanted effects will also occur. Some of these may be serious and must be reported to your doctor.
Before you begin treatment with arsenic trioxide, you and your doctor should talk about the benefit of this medicine as well as the risks of using it.
This medicine is to be given only by or under the immediate supervision of your doctor.
Other uses (PubMed Health)
How To Use
Medicines used to treat cancer are very strong and can have many side effects. Before receiving this medicine, make sure you understand all the risks and benefits. It is important for you to work closely with your doctor during your treatment.
Your doctor will prescribe your dose and schedule. This medicine is given through a needle placed in a vein.
You will receive this medicine while you are in a hospital or cancer treatment center. A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
Missed dose: This medicine needs to be given on a fixed schedule. If you miss a dose, call your doctor, home health caregiver, or treatment clinic for instructions.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
Some foods and medicines can affect how arsenic trioxide works. Tell your doctor if you are using any of the following:Amphotericin B Diuretic (water pill) Heart rhythm medicine
When Not To Use
This medicine is not right for everyone. You should not receive it if you had an allergic reaction to arsenic trioxide or if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
This medicine may cause birth defects if either partner is using it during conception or pregnancy. Tell your doctor right away if you or your partner becomes pregnant. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant during and after treatment.
Do not breastfeed while you are using this medicine. Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease, liver disease, heart disease, heart failure, or a history of heart rhythm problems (such as QT prolongation).
This medicine may cause the following problems:APL differentiation syndrome Changes in heart rhythm Increased risk for other cancers
Cancer medicine can cause nausea or vomiting, sometimes even after you receive medicine to prevent these effects. Ask your doctor or nurse about other ways to control any nausea or vomiting that might happen.
Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments.
Possible side effects
Summary More details
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
Fainting, dizziness, lightheadedness
Fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeat
Fever, trouble breathing
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
Headache, trouble sleeping
Redness, pain, or swelling where the needle is placed
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
More side effects of this drug
Brand names include
There may be other brand names for this medicine.