Bevacizumab may cause you to develop a hole in the wall of your stomach or intestine. This is a serious and possibly life-threatening condition. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: stomach pain, constipation, nausea, vomiting, or fever.
Bevacizumab may slow the healing of wounds, such as cuts made by a doctor during surgery. In some cases, bevacizumab may cause a wound that has closed to split open. This is a serious and possibly life-threatening condition. If you experience this problem, call your doctor immediately. Tell your doctor if you have recently had surgery or if you plan to have surgery. If you have recently had surgery, you should not use bevacizumab until at least 28 days have passed and until the area has completed healed. If you are scheduled to have surgery, your doctor will stop your treatment with bevacizumab at least 28 days before the surgery.
Bevacizumab may cause severe bleeding that can be life-threatening. Tell your doctor if you have recently coughed up blood. If you experience any of the following symptoms at any time during your treatment, call your doctor immediately: nosebleeds or bleeding from your gums, coughing up or vomiting blood or material that looks like coffee grounds, unusual bleeding or bruising, increased menstrual flow or vaginal bleeding, pink, red, or dark brown urine, red or tarry black bowel movements, headache, dizziness, or weakness.
Talk to your doctor about the risks of using bevacizumab.
Bevacizumab is used with chemotherapy to treat cancer of the colon (large intestine) or rectum that has spread to other parts of the body. Bevacizumab is also used with chemotherapy to treat certain types of lung cancer. Bevacizumab is also used to treat glioblastoma (a certain type of cancerous brain tumor) that has been already treated with other medications. Bevacizumab is also used in combination with another medication to treat renal cell cancer (RCC, a type of cancer that begins in the kidney) that has spread to other parts of the body. Bevacizumab is in a class of medications called antiangiogenic agents. It works by stopping the formation of blood vessels that bring oxygen and nutrients to tumors. This may slow the growth and spread of tumors.
Bevacizumab comes as a solution to administer slowly into a vein. Bevacizumab is administered by a doctor or nurse in a medical office, infusion center, or hospital. Bevacizumab is usually given once every 14 days to treat cancer of the colon or rectum, glioblastoma, or renal cell cancer and once every 3 weeks to treat lung cancer.
It should take 90 minutes for you to receive your first dose of bevacizumab. A doctor or nurse will watch you closely to see how your body reacts to bevacizumab. If you do not have any serious problems when you receive your first dose of bevacizumab, it will usually take 30 to 60 minutes for you to receive each of your remaining doses of the medication.
Bevacizumab has previously been used to treat breast cancer, however, further investigation by the FDA has found that the risks associated with treatment do not justify use for the benefit found in most cases. Bevacizumab is also sometimes used to treat wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD; an ongoing disease of the eye that causes loss of the ability to see straight ahead and may make it more difficult to read, drive, or perform other daily activities) and other types of cancer. Talk to your doctor about the risks of using bevacizumab to treat your condition.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.
If you miss an appointment to receive a dose of bevacizumab, call your doctor as soon as possible.
loss of appetite
change in ability to taste food
sores on the skin or in the mouth
coughing, gagging, or choking after eating or drinking
slow or difficult speech
dizziness or faintness
weakness or numbness of an arm or leg
pain in the arms, neck, or upper back
shortness of breath
change in vision or loss of vision
sore throat, fever, chills, and other signs of infection
swelling of the face, eyes, stomach, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
unexplained weight gain
dry, hacking cough
pain, tenderness, warmth, redness, or swelling in one leg only
redness, itching, or scaling of the skin
Bevacizumab may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while receiving this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
Keep all appointments with your doctor. Your doctor will check your blood pressure and test your urine regularly during your treatment with bevacizumab.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
Last Revised - 01/15/2012
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, 2013. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.