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Last reviewed on RxList: 3/3/2017
Chemet Side Effects Center

Last reviewed on RxList 1/7/2016

Chemet (succimer) is a chelating (binding) agent that binds to lead in the blood and allows it to be passed out in the urine used in the treatment of lead poisoning. Common side effects of Chemet include nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea, metallic taste in the mouth, drowsiness, dizziness, watering eyes, or headache.

The initial dosage of Chemet is 10 mg/kg or 350 mg/m2 every eight hours for five days, then 10 mg/kg or 350 mg/m2 every 12 hours for an additional two weeks. Treatment course lasts 19 days and may be repeated if indicated by blood lead concentration. No other medications are known to interact with Chemet. Tell to your doctor all prescription or over-the-counter medications or supplements you use. During pregnancy, Chemet should be used only when prescribed. It is unknown if this medication passes into breast milk. Since this medication is used for lead poisoning and lead may pass into breast milk, do not breast-feed while using this drug.

Our Chemet (succimer) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

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.

Chemet Consumer Information

Seek emergency medical attention or contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following rare but serious side effects to succimer:

  • an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of the throat; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
  • skin rash or sores in the mouth; or
  • signs of infection such as fever, sore throat, or coughing.

Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take succimer and talk to your doctor if you experience

  • nausea, vomiting, or decreased appetite;
  • diarrhea;
  • metallic taste in the mouth;
  • drowsiness;
  • dizziness;
  • watering eyes; or
  • headache.

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.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Chemet (Succimer)

Chemet Professional Information


Clinical experience with CHEMET has been limited. Consequently, the full spectrum and incidence of adverse reactions including the possibility of hypersensitivity or idiosyncratic reactions have not been determined. The most common events attributable to succimer, i.e., gastrointestinal symptoms or increases in serum transaminases, have been observed in about 10% of patients (see PRECAUTIONS). Rashes, some necessitating discontinuation of therapy, have been reported in about 4% of patients. If rash occurs, other causes (e.g. measles) should be considered before ascribing the reaction to succimer. Rechallenge with succimer may be considered if lead levels are high enough to warrant retreatment. One allergic mucocutaneous reaction has been reported on repeated administration of the drug (see PRECAUTIONS). Mild to moderate neutropenia has been observed in some patients receiving succimer (see WARNINGS). Table I presents adverse events reported with the administration of succimer for the treatment of lead and other heavy metal intoxication.


  Pediatric Patients (191) Adults (134)
% (n) % (n)
Digestive: 12.0 23 20.9 28
Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, appetite loss, hemorrhoidal symptoms, loose stools, metallic taste in mouth.
Body as a Whole: 5.2 10 15.7 21
Back pain, abdominal cramps, stomach pains, head pain, rib pain, chills, flank pain, fever, flu-like symptoms, heavy head/tired, head cold, headache, moniliasis.
Metabolic: 4.2 8 10.4 14
Elevated SGPT, SGOT, alkaline phosphatase, elevated serum cholesterol.
Nervous: 1.0 2 12.7 17
Drowsiness, dizziness, sensorimotor neuropathy, sleepiness, paresthesia.
Skin and Appendages: 2.6 5 11.2 15
Papular rash, herpetic rash, rash, mucocutaneous eruptions, pruritus.
Special Senses: 1.0 2 3.7 5
Cloudy film in eye, ears plugged, otitis media, eyes watery.
Respiratory 3.7 7 0.7 1
Throat sore, rhinorrhea, nasal congestion, cough.
Urogenital: 0.0 - 3.7 5
Decreased urination, voiding difficulty, proteinuria increased.
Cardiovascular: 0.0 1.8 2
Heme/Lymphatic: 0.5* 1 1.5* 2
Mild to moderate neutropenia, increased platelet count, intermittent eosinophilia.
Musculoskeletal: 0.0 3.0 4
Kneecap pain, leg pains.
*Does not include neutropenia - see WARNINGS.

To report SUSPECTED ADVERSE REACTIONS, contact Recordati Rare Diseases Inc. at 1-888-755-8344 or FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Chemet (Succimer)

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© Chemet Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Chemet Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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