Taking GLEEVEC Medication for KIT+ GIST
How to Take GLEEVEC
GLEEVEC® is a tablet you take by mouth, not an injection. GLEEVEC is available in 100- and 400-mg scored tablets. The different strengths of GLEEVEC tablets allow your doctor to manage your daily dose in the most effective and convenient way. Your doctor will recommend a starting dose to help you get the best possible results.
GLEEVEC dosage for unresectable or metastatic KIT+ GIST
The recommended dose of GLEEVEC is:
- 400 mg/day for adult patients with unresectable and/or metastatic malignant KIT+ GIST
- Dose may be increased to 800 mg daily (given as 400 mg twice daily)
A dosage increase may be considered for patients showing clear signs of disease progression at lower doses as long as the patient is not having any severe adverse drug reactions.
Sometimes disease progression results from a gradual resistance to GLEEVEC that occurs over time. KIT+ GIST originates with a genetic mutation, and drug resistance often occurs when the abnormal KIT protein is reactivated by a secondary mutation triggered after treatment has begun. This secondary mutation can result in a failure of the cancer cells to respond to treatment.
GLEEVEC dosage as adjuvant therapy for KIT+ GIST
The recommended dose of GLEEVEC is:
- 400 mg/day for the adjuvant treatment of adult patients following complete gross resection (removal by surgery) of KIT+ GIST
- In the adjuvant clinical study, GLEEVEC was administered for 1 year in patients with tumor size ≥3cm. The optimal duration of GLEEVEC therapy is unknown.
- Treatment may be continued as long as there is no evidence of progressive disease or unacceptable toxicity
Important things to know about taking GLEEVEC
Take GLEEVEC exactly as prescribed by your doctor
- Take GLEEVEC with a large glass of water and a full meal
- Do NOT crush GLEEVEC tablets
- GLEEVEC tablets may be dispersed in a glass of water or apple juice (approximately 50 mL for a 100-mg tablet, and 200 mL for a 400-mg tablet) and stirred with a spoon. The suspension should be administered immediately after complete disintegration of the tablet(s)
- Tell your doctor if you have a history of heart disease or risk factors for heart disease
- Tell your doctor if you have any side effects or questions
Do not take any other medications—including over-the-counter medications such as acetaminophen, vitamins, or herbal supplements —without talking to your doctor or pharmacist first. Taking other medications with GLEEVEC may affect how these drugs work, or affect how GLEEVEC works.
DO NOT TAKE GLEEVEC with grapefruit juice, and ask your doctor about other medications and foods that may affect how GLEEVEC works.
DO NOT CHANGE YOUR DOSE OR STOP TAKING GLEEVEC unless you are told to do so by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take your dose as soon as possible, unless it is almost time for your next dose. In this case, your missed dose should not be taken. DO NOT take a double dose to make up for any missed dose.
DO NOT TAKE GLEEVEC IF...
- You are pregnant or could be pregnant. Harm to the unborn child can occur when administered to pregnant women. Therefore, women should not become pregnant and should be advised of the potential risk to the unborn child if GLEEVEC is used during pregnancy
- You are breast-feeding, because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants
- Sexually active females should use highly effective birth control while taking GLEEVEC
Be sure to talk to your doctor and/or nurse about these issues before taking GLEEVEC. For more important information about taking GLEEVEC, read the Important Safety Information.