Disease Information & Support

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Generic name Carmustine
Pronunciation kar-MUS-teen
Brand name(s), other common name(s) BiCNU®, BCNU
Drug type  DNA-damaging agent
How the drug is given Intravenously (IV)

Carmustine is FDA approved to treat people who have myeloma (in combination with prednisone); relapsed or refractory Hodgkin lymphoma (as secondary therapy in combination with other approved drugs in patients who relapse while being treated with primary therapy or who fail to respond to primary therapy); relapsed or refractory non-Hodgkin lymphoma (as secondary therapy in combination with other approved drugs).

Side effects needing medical attention: Carmustine may damage some tissues and cause scarring around the injection site if it seeps out of the vein into which it is injected. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you notice redness, pain, or swelling at the injection site. Other side effects needing medical attention are cough; fever; chills; sore throat; shortness of breath; unusual bleeding or bruising; flushing of face; sores in mouth and on lips; unusual tiredness or weakness; swelling of feet or lower legs; unusual decrease in urination; black, tarry stools; blood in urine or stool; hoarseness; lower back or side pain; painful or difficult urination; pinhead-sized red spots on skin. Side effects that affect the lungs (for example, cough and shortness of breath) may be more likely in smokers. Other possible side effects are nausea and vomiting (usually lasting no longer than 4 -6 hours); discoloration of skin along the vein of injection; diarrhea; difficulty in swallowing; difficulty in walking; dizziness; loss of appetite; rash; itching.

Side effects needing medical attention after stopping this medication: Cough; fever; chills; sore throat; shortness of breath; unusual bleeding or bruising; black, tarry stools; blood in urine or stool; hoarseness; lower back or side pain; painful or difficult urination; pinhead-sized red spots on skin.

 

For information on how to manage the costs of drug therapy, please see Financial Matters and Prescription Drug Coverage, or to speak with an Information Specialist, call (800) 955-4572.

last updated on Monday, October 15, 2012