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Leustatin Patient Information Including Side Effects

Brand Names: Cladribine Novaplus, Leustatin

Generic Name: cladribine (Pronunciation: KLAD ri been)

What is cladribine (Leustatin)?

Cladribine is a cancer medication that interferes with the growth of cancer cells and slows their growth and spread in the body.

Cladribine is used to treat hairy cell leukemia (a type of blood cancer).

Cladribine may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of cladribine (Leustatin)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Tell your caregivers at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • numbness, tingling, weakness, or burning pain in your fingers or toes;
  • numbness or tingly feeling around your mouth;
  • feeling like you might pass out;
  • lower back pain, blood in your urine, urinating less than usual or not at all;
  • muscle weakness, tightness, or contraction, overactive reflexes;
  • fast or slow heart rate, weak pulse, feeling short of breath;
  • pale or yellowed skin, dark colored urine, fever, confusion; or
  • signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat, flu symptoms, easy bruising or bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin, loss of appetite, mouth sores, unusual weakness.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • headache, tired feeling;
  • nausea, diarrhea, constipation;
  • mild itching or skin rash;
  • cough; or
  • pain, swelling, or irritation around the IV needle.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the Leustatin (cladribine injection for intravenous infusion only) Side Effects Center for a complete guide to possible side effects

What is the most important information I should know about cladribine (Leustatin)?

Before you receive cladribine, tell your doctor If you have liver or kidney disease or a bone marrow problem.

Cladribine can lower the blood cells that help your body fight infections. This can make it easier for you to bleed from an injury or get sick from being around others who are ill. Avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Tell your doctor at once if you develop signs of infection.

Tell your caregivers at once if you have a serious side effect such as numbness or tingling, weakness or burning pain in your fingers or toes, lower back pain, blood in your urine, urinating less than usual, pale or yellowed skin, dark colored urine, or feeling like you might pass out.

Side Effects Centers

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration


You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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