Purinethol

Drug List

Purinethol

Drug Name

Purinethol (Mercaptopurine)

Manufactured By

GlaxoSmithKline LLC

Drug Savings

NPC's mission is your health. We recognize your need for help when you are applying for discount programs for your prescription medications. We consist of friendly and experienced advocates that not only know how these free and discount programs work, but are ready to help. We are available to take your call and answer any questions you may have as you search for the right program to fit your needs. We can also explain any supporting material you may need to provide as you apply for these programs. If for any reason you are denied, we also are experienced in the best appeals process with a high success rate.

Nationwide Prescription Connection (NPC) is an experienced advocacy service that helps connect patients to manufacturer provided free and discount programs. We can help the uninsured, under insured, those in the Medicare gap also known as the "doughnut hole", or even those needing help with expensive co-pays.  Our web site makes it easy for you to enter the medications you are taking, along with some basic patient information, and then finds the program that is right for you.

Treats Disease/Condition

Uses

This medication is used with other drugs to treat a certain type of cancer (acute lymphocytic leukemia). Mercaptopurine belongs to a class of drugs known as purine antagonists. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells. Talk to the doctor about the risks and benefits of mercaptopurine, especially when used in children and young adults. This drug may also be used to treat Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, and lymphoblastic lymphoma.

How To Use

Take this medication by mouth with or without food with a full glass of water (8 ounces or 240 milliliters), usually once daily or as directed by your doctor. Drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication unless otherwise directed by your doctor. Doing so may help decrease the risk of side effects (e.g., kidney stones). If you are using the suspension, shake the bottle well for at least 30 seconds before each dose to make sure the medication is well mixed. Carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose. Once opened, the suspension bottle should be used within 6 weeks. The dosage is based on your body weight, medical condition and response to treatment. Do not increase your dose or take this medication more often than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, and the risk of serious side effects may be increased.

Side Effects

Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite may occur. Temporary hair loss may also occur. Normal hair growth should return after treatment has ended. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Many people using this medication have serious side effects. However, your doctor has prescribed this drug because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Careful monitoring by your doctor may decrease your risk. Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: easy bruising/bleeding, dizziness/fainting, joint pain/swelling, tongue/mouth sores or pain, unusual tiredness, symptoms of liver disease (such as persistent nausea/vomiting, stomach/abdominal pain, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin). Tell your doctor right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: symptoms of possible lymphoma (such as swollen or painful abdomen, persistent fever, night sweats, unexplained weight loss), signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine, pain in the lower back/side). This medication can lower the body's ability to fight an infection. Tell your doctor promptly if you develop any signs of an infection such as fever, chills, or persistent sore throat. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Drug Interactions

Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with them first. This drug should not be used within 2 weeks of receiving a live vaccine (e.g., flu, measles, mumps, polio). Before taking this medication, tell your doctor of any planned or recently received vaccines. (See also Precautions section.) This drug should not be used with the following medication because a very serious interaction may occur: febuxostat. If you are currently using the medication listed above, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting mercaptopurine. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: aminosalicylates (e.g., olsalazine, mesalazine, sulfasalazine), aspirin, "blood thinners" (e.g., warfarin), drugs that may affect the bone marrow (e.g., trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole, other cancer chemotherapies), drugs that may affect the liver (e.g., amiodarone, erythromycin). Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking allopurinol. The dose of mercaptopurine may need to be decreased to avoid severe side effects. If your doctor has directed you to take low-dose aspirin for heart attack or stroke prevention (usually at dosages of 81-325 milligrams a day), you should continue taking it unless your doctor instructs you otherwise. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details. This product can affect the results of certain lab tests (e.g., uric acid), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug. Mercaptopurine is very similar to azathioprine. Do not use medications containing azathioprine while using mercaptopurine. This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.

In Case of Overdose

Symptoms of overdose may include: sudden or severe nausea/vomiting, sudden/severe diarrhea, dark urine, severe abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin. If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222.

In Case of Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store at room temperature between 59-77 degrees F (15-25 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.