Melphalan injection should be given only under the supervision of a doctor with experience in the use of chemotherapy medications.
Melphalan can cause a severe decrease in the number of blood cells in your bone marrow. This may cause certain symptoms and may increase the risk that you will develop a serious infection or bleeding. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately: fever, sore throat, ongoing cough and congestion, or other signs of infection; unusual bleeding or bruising; bloody or black, tarry stools; bloody vomit; or vomiting blood or brown material that resembles coffee grounds.
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order laboratory tests regularly before and during your treatment to see if your blood cells are affected by this drug.
Melphalan may increase the risk that you will develop other cancers. Talk with your doctor about the risks of taking melphalan.
Melphalan injection is used to treat multiple myeloma (a type of cancer of the bone marrow). Melphalan injection should only be used to treat people who are unable to take melphalan by mouth. Melphalan is in a class of medications called alkylating agents. It works by stopping or slowing the growth of cancer cells in your body.
Melphalan injection comes as a powder to be mixed with liquid to be slowly injected intravenously (into a vein) over 15 to 30 minutes by a doctor or nurse in a medical facility. It is usually given once every 2 weeks for 4 doses and afterwards, once every 4 weeks. The length of treatment depends on how well your body responds to treatment.
Your doctor may need to delay your treatment or adjust your dose if you experience certain side effects. It is important for you to tell your doctor how you are feeling during your treatment with melphalan
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
loss of appetite or weight
sores in the mouth and throat
missed menstrual periods (in girls and women)
a warm and/or tingling sensation
pain, itching, redness, swelling, blisters, or sores in the place where the medication was injected
difficulty breathing or swallowing
unusual tiredness or weakness
fast, irregular, or pounding heartbeat
yellowing of the skin or eyes
pain in the upper right part of the stomach
dark colored urine
unusual lumps or masses
Melphalan injection may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking 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.
sores in the mouth and throat
black, tarry, or bloody stools
bloody vomit or vomited material that looks like coffee grounds
unusual bruising or bleeding
loss of the ability to move muscles and to feel a part of the body
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 - 08/15/2012
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, 2015. 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.