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Photofrin

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Photofrin

PHOTOFRIN
(porfimer sodium)

Photofrin

DRUG DESCRIPTION

PHOTOFRIN (porfimer sodium) for Injection is a photosensitizing agent used in the photodynamic therapy (PDT) of tumors and of high-grade dysplasia (HGD) in Barrett's esophagus (BE). Following reconstitution of the freeze-dried product with 5% Dextrose Injection (USP) or 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection (USP), it is injected intravenously. This is followed 40–50 hours later by illumination of the tumor or the esophageal segment with HGD in BE with laser light (630 nm wavelength). PHOTOFRIN (porfimer sodium) is not a single chemical entity; it is a mixture of oligomers formed by ether and ester linkages of up to eight porphyrin units. It is a dark red to reddish brown cake or powder. Each vial of PHOTOFRIN contains 75 mg of porfimer sodium as a sterile freeze-dried cake or powder. Hydrochloric Acid and/or Sodium Hydroxide may be added during manufacture to adjust the pH to within 7.2-7.9. There are no preservatives or other additives. The structural formula below is representative of the components present in PHOTOFRIN (porfimer sodium) .

Figure 1 : Structure of Porfimer Sodium

PHOTOFRIN (porfimer sodium)  Structural Formula Illustration

What are the possible side effects of porfimer (Photofrin)?

If you experience any of the following serious side effects from porfimer, contact your doctor immediately:

  • an allergic reaction (including difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
  • shortness of breath or increased coughing;
  • chest pain;
  • bloody vomit or black, bloody, or tarry stools; or
  • a severe skin reaction to light such as blistering.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Talk to your doctor if you experience

  • mild...

Read All Potential Side Effects and See Pictures of Photofrin »

Last reviewed on RxList: 5/19/2011
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

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