Home :: Sandimmune
Generic name: Cyclosporine
Other brand name: Neoral
Cyclosporine is a drug that reduces the body's ability to fight illness/disease (an immunosuppressant), leaving patients vulnerable to infection or other problems (including cancers such as lymphoma). Using other drugs that treat organ transplant rejection along with this drug may increase these tendencies.
Cyclosporine can also cause high blood pressure and kidney problems. The risk of both problems increases with higher doses and longer treatment with this drug. Psoriasis patients who have had certain previous treatments (e.g., PUVA, UVB, coal tar, radiation therapy, methotrexate) are at increased risk to develop skin cancer. Therefore, cyclosporine must be given only under close medical supervision.
Because different brands deliver different amounts of medication, do not switch brands of cyclosporine without your doctor's permission and directions.
Laboratory tests (e.g., kidney function tests, blood tests) may be performed to monitor your progress.
- Your doctor will tailor your dosage of Sandimmune in accordance with your body's response. Expect a single dose of 15 milligrams per 2.2 pounds of body weight 4 to 12 hours before a transplant and 1 dose daily for 1 to 2 weeks after the operation. After that, the doctor may keep you on a daily dose of 5 to 10 milligrams per 2.2 pounds of body weight.
Uses of Sandimmune
- Sandimmune is sometimes used in the treatment of severe skin disorders, including psoriasis and dermatomyositis (inflammation of the skin and muscles causing weakness and rash).
- The drug is also used in procedures involving bone marrow, the pancreas, and the lungs.
- Cyclosporine and cyclosporine (modified) are also sometimes used to treat Crohn's disease (a condition in which the body attacks the lining of the digestive tract, causing pain, diarrhea, weight loss, and fever) and to prevent rejection in patients who have received pancreas or cornea transplants.
- Cyclosporine is used to prevent or treat organ rejection in transplant patients.
- This medication may also be used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, a specific skin disorder (psoriasis), and has other uses as determined by your doctor .
Side Effects of Sandimmune
Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any appear or change in intensity, inform your doctor immediately. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Sandimmune. The principal side effects of Sandimmune are high blood pressure, hirsutism (unusual growth of hair), kidney damage, excessive growth of the gums, and tremor. Other side effects may include:
- Abdominal discomfort, acne, breathing difficulty, convulsions, coughing, cramps, diarrhea, flu-like symptoms, flushing, headache, liver damage, lymph system tumor, muscle, bone, or joint pain, nasal inflammation, nausea, numbness or tingling, sinus inflammation, vomiting, wheezing
Warnings and precautions before taking Sandimmune:
- When your immune system is suppressed by Sandimmune, you are at increased risk of infection and of certain malignancies, including skin cancer and lymph system cancer.
- High-dose Sandimmune is toxic to the liver and kidneys and may cause serious kidney damage. Because this toxicity has symptoms similar to those of transplant rejection, you must be monitored closely. If your body is trying hard to reject a transplanted organ, your doctor will probably allow the rejection to occur rather than give you a very high dose of Sandimmune.
- Do not have immunizations/vaccinations without the consent of your doctor, and avoid contact with people who have recently received oral polio vaccine or nasal flu vaccine.
- Sandimmune® (cyclosporine), when used in high doses, can cause hepatotoxicity and nephrotoxicity.
- This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Cyclosporine used during pregnancy has resulted in newborns with problems such as low birth weight and being born too early (premature). Other more serious problems have also been reported, including death of the unborn baby. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
Drug Interaction :- If Sandimmune is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Sandimmune with the following:
- Allopurinol (Zyloprim)
- Amiodarone (Cordarone)
- Amphotericin B (Fungizone, Abelcet)
- Atorvastatin (Lipitor)
- Bromocriptine (Parlodel)
- Calcium-blocking heart and blood pressure medications such as Adalat, Calan, Cardene,
- Cardizem, and Procardia
- Carbamazepine (Tegretol)
- Cimetidine (Tagamet)
- Clarithromycin (Biaxin)
An overdose of Sandimmune would be expected to cause liver and kidney problems.