Drug: Rituxan

RITUXIMAB (ri TUX i mab) is a monoclonal antibody. This medicine changes the way the body's immune system works. It is used commonly to treat non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and other conditions. In cancer cells, this drug targets a specific protein within cancer cells and stops the cancer cells from growing. It is also used to treat rhuematoid arthritis (RA). In RA, this medicine slow the inflammatory process and help reduce joint pain and swelling. This medicine is often used with other cancer or arthritis medications.

Source: http://www.healthline.com

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • low blood counts - this medicine may decrease the number of white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets. You may be at increased risk for infections and bleeding.
  • signs of infection - fever or chills, cough, sore throat, pain or difficulty passing urine
  • signs of decreased platelets or bleeding - bruising, pinpoint red spots on the skin, black, tarry stools, blood in the urine
  • signs of decreased red blood cells - unusually weak or tired, fainting spells, lightheadedness
  • breathing problems
  • confused, not responsive
  • chest pain
  • fast, irregular heartbeat
  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
  • mouth sores
  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
  • stomach pain
  • swelling of the ankles, feet, or hands
  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or other health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
  • anxiety
  • headache
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle aches
  • nausea
  • night sweats

Source: http://www.healthline.com

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • low blood counts - this medicine may decrease the number of white blood cells, red blood cells and platelets. You may be at increased risk for infections and bleeding.
  • signs of infection - fever or chills, cough, sore throat, pain or difficulty passing urine
  • signs of decreased platelets or bleeding - bruising, pinpoint red spots on the skin, black, tarry stools, blood in the urine
  • signs of decreased red blood cells - unusually weak or tired, fainting spells, lightheadedness
  • breathing problems
  • confused, not responsive
  • chest pain
  • fast, irregular heartbeat
  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
  • mouth sores
  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
  • stomach pain
  • swelling of the ankles, feet, or hands
  • trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or other health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
  • anxiety
  • headache
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle aches
  • nausea
  • night sweats

Source: http://www.healthline.com

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine? They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • blood disorders
  • heart disease
  • history of hepatitis B
  • infection (especially a virus infection such as chickenpox, cold sores, or herpes)
  • irregular heartbeat
  • kidney disease
  • lung or breathing disease, like asthma
  • lupus
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to rituximab, mouse proteins, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

Source: http://www.healthline.com

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