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Vinblastine

Chemotherapy

Brand names:

Velban®

Often used for:

Leukemia, Lymphoma, Germ cell tumor, Melanoma, Sarcomas 

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About Vinblastine

Vinblastine is a type of chemotherapy. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cells. It is usually used in combination with other medicines.

Patients will have regular blood draws to check blood counts and monitor liver and kidney function.

Vinblastine can cause tissue damage if it leaks from the vein. Patients may have irritation and skin damage at the IV site. Let a caregiver know if there is burning during administration.

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May be given as a liquid into a vein by IV

 
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Possible Side Effects

  • Constipation
  • Abdominal pain
  • Jaw pain
  • Difficulty walking
  • Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
  • Muscle pain or weakness
  • Bone or joint pain
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pain when urinating
  • Blurry vision
  • Dizziness
  • Low blood counts (may cause increased risk of infection, bleeding, anemia and/or fatigue)
  • Hair loss
  • Low sodium levels in the blood
  • Skin irritation at the IV site

Not all patients who take vinblastine will experience these side effects. Common side effects are in bold, but there may be others. Please report all suspected side effects to your doctor or pharmacist.

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Possible Late Effects

Some patients may experience long-term or late effects of treatment that may continue or develop months or years after treatment ends. Possible late effects due to vinblastine include:

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Tips for Families

Be sure to discuss these and other recommendations with your doctor or pharmacist.

  • A doctor may recommend a stool softener or laxative for constipation.
  • Medicine may be given to help with numbness, tingling, or nerve pain.
  • While taking this medicine, do not eat grapefruit or Seville (bitter) oranges or drink juice or beverages containing grapefruit or Seville orange.
  • Sexually active patients should take steps to prevent pregnancy during treatment and for 6 months after completion of therapy.
  • Patients should tell their doctor if they are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Caregivers should follow instructions to avoid contact with patient body fluids which can contain the drug for 48 hours after it is given.