Desferal

DRUG DESCRIPTION

Desferal, deferoxamine mesylate USP, is an iron-chelating agent, available in vials for intramuscular, subcutaneous, and intravenous administration. Desferal is supplied as vials containing 500 mg and 2 g of deferoxamine mesylate USP in sterile, lyophilized form. Deferoxamine mesylate is N-[5-[3-[(5aminopentyl)hydroxycarbamoyl]propionamido]pentyl]-3-[[5-(Nhydroxyacetamido)pentyl]carbamoyl]propionohydroxamic acid monomethanesul-fonate (salt), and its structural formula is

Desferal® (deferoxamine mesylate) Structural Formula Illustration

Deferoxamine mesylate USP is a white to off-white powder. It is freely soluble in water and slightly soluble in methanol. Its molecular weight is 656.79.

What are the possible side effects of deferoxamine (Desferal)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; joint or muscle pain; fever; headache; nausea or vomiting; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using deferoxamine and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • fast heartbeats;
  • blue lips, skin, or fingernails;
  • severe, watery, bloody diarrhea with cramping;
  • cough, wheezing, gasping, or other breathing problems;
  • stuffy...

Read All Potential Side Effects and See Pictures of Desferal »

What are the precautions when taking deferoxamine (Desferal)?

Before using deferoxamine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney problems, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, any fungal infection.

If you are using this medication for aluminum poisoning, also tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have: seizures, decreased calcium levels in the blood, hyperparathyroidism.

This drug may make you dizzy or cause blurred vision. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness or clear vision until you are sure you...

Read All Potential Precautions of Desferal »


Desferal Consumer (continued)

SIDE EFFECTS: Pain and swelling at the injection site or blurred vision may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

This medicine may cause your urine to turn reddish. This effect is harmless.

When this medication is given into a vein, flushing, severe itching, severe dizziness, fast heartbeat, and fainting can occur. Therefore the manufacturer recommends that, when possible, this medication be given either in the muscle or under the skin.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: other vision changes (such as vision loss, loss of color vision, cataracts), eye pain, hearing changes (such as ringing ears, decreased hearing/loss).

Rarely, this drug may cause serious (sometimes fatal) bacterial or fungal infections. Get medical help right away if you notice any of the following: unexplained diarrhea/abdominal pain/fever.

This drug may infrequently cause a serious (rarely fatal) lung condition (acute respiratory distress syndrome or ARDS). Get medical help right away if you notice any of the following: sudden/severe shortness of breath, labored or rapid breathing, severe dizziness.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe 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.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

PRECAUTIONS: Before using deferoxamine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney problems, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, any fungal infection.

If you are using this medication for aluminum poisoning, also tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have: seizures, decreased calcium levels in the blood, hyperparathyroidism.

This drug may make you dizzy or cause blurred vision. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness or clear vision until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.

Children (especially those younger than 3 years of age) may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially the effects on bone growth.

Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially vision/hearing problems.

During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.

It is unknown whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.


Desferal Patient Information Including Side Effects

Brand Names: Desferal

Generic Name: deferoxamine (Pronunciation: de fer OX a meen)

  • What is deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • What are the possible side effects of deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • What is the most important information I should know about deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • What should I discuss with my health care provider before using deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • How should I take deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • What happens if I miss a dose (Desferal)?
  • What happens if I overdose (Desferal)?
  • What should I avoid while using deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • What other drugs will affect deferoxamine (Desferal)?
  • Where can I get more information?

What is deferoxamine (Desferal)?

Deferoxamine binds to iron and removes it from the blood stream.

Deferoxamine is used to treat iron overload caused by blood transfusions in adults and children at least 3 years old.

Deferoxamine may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of deferoxamine (Desferal)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; joint or muscle pain; fever; headache; nausea or vomiting; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using deferoxamine and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • fast heartbeats;
  • blue lips, skin, or fingernails;
  • severe, watery, bloody diarrhea with cramping;
  • cough, wheezing, gasping, or other breathing problems;
  • stuffy nose, fever, redness or swelling around your nose and eyes, scabbing inside your nose;
  • stomach or back pain, coughing up blood;
  • easy bruising or bleeding, unusual weakness;
  • urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • vision or hearing problems; or
  • leg cramps, bone problems, or growth changes (in a child using this medication).

Keep using deferoxamine and talk to your doctor if you have any of these less serious side effects:

  • numbness or burning pain anywhere in the body;
  • warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under the skin;
  • mild itching or skin rash;
  • mild diarrhea, nausea, or upset stomach;
  • dizziness;
  • reddish colored urine; or
  • pain, burning, swelling, redness, irritation, or a hard lump where the medicine was injected.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about deferoxamine (Desferal)?

Do not use this medication if you are allergic to deferoxamine, if you have kidney disease, or if you are unable to urinate.

Before using deferoxamine, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have liver disease, vision or hearing problems, asthma or other breathing disorder, heart disease, low levels of calcium in your blood (hypocalcemia), or a parathyroid disorder.

While you are using deferoxamine, get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; joint or muscle pain; fever; headache; nausea or vomiting; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Long-term use of deferoxamine can slow a child's growth. Tell your doctor if the child using this medication is not growing or gaining weight properly.

If a child is using deferoxamine, a doctor should check the child's growth every 3 months. Do not miss any scheduled visits to your child's doctor.

If you need to have any type of x-ray or CT scan using a dye that is injected into a vein, you may need to temporarily stop using deferoxamine. Be sure the doctor knows ahead of time that you are using this medication.

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