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Early Data Show Potential for Imatinib Mesylate Tablets to Treat Life-Threatening Form of Pulmonary Artery Disease
Date:10/8/2008

2-3 months).

A 25% decrease in the recommended dose should be used for patients with severe hepatic impairment.

Some GIST patients (5%) were reported to have severe gastrointestinal (GI) bleeds and/or intratumoral bleeds. GI tumor sites may have been the source of GI bleeds.

Patients should be weighed and monitored regularly for signs and symptoms of edema, which can be serious or life-threatening. There have also been reports, including fatalities, of cardiac tamponade, cerebral edema, increased intracranial pressure, papilledema, and GI perforation.

In patients with HES and cardiac involvement, cases of cardiogenic shock/left ventricular dysfunction have been associated with the initiation of Gleevec therapy. The condition was reported to be reversible with the administration of systemic steroids, circulatory support measures, and temporarily withholding Gleevec. MDS/MPD disease and systemic mastocytosis may be associated with high eosinophil levels. Performance of an echocardiogram and determination of serum troponin should therefore be considered in patients with HES/CEL, and in patients with MDS/MPD or ASM associated with high eosinophil levels. If either is abnormal, the prophylactic use of systemic steroids (1-2 mg/kg) for 1-2 weeks concomitantly with Gleevec should be considered at the initiation of therapy.

Bullous dermatologic reactions (eg, erythema multiforme and Stevens-Johnson syndrome) have also been reported. In some cases, the reaction recurred upon re-challenge. Several postmarketing reports describe patients able to tolerate the reintroduction of Gleevec at a lower dose with or without concomitant corticosteroids or antihistamines following resolution or improvement of the bullous reaction.

Consider potential toxicities--specifically liver, kidney and cardiac toxicity, and immunosuppression from long-term use.

Gleevec is metabolized by the CYP3A4 isoenzyme and is an inhibitor of CYP3A4, CYP2D6 and
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SOURCE Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation
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