Pralatrexate

Other Names: Folotyn®

About This Drug

Pralatrexate is used to treat cancer. It is given in your vein (IV).

Possible Side Effects

  • Nausea
  • Soreness of the mouth and throat. You may have red areas, white patches, or sores that hurt.
  • Tiredness
  • Decreased in the number of platelets. This may raise your risk of bleeding.

Note: Each of the side effects above was reported in 40% or greater of patients treated with pralatrexate. Not all possible side effects are included above.

Warnings and Precautions

  • Bone marrow depression. This is a decrease in the number of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets. This may raise your risk of infection, make you tired and weak (fatigue), and raise your risk of bleeding.
  • Changes in your liver function. Your liver function will be checked as needed.
  • Changes in your kidney function. Your kidney function will be checked as needed.
  • Skin reactions, some fatal, have occurred.
  • Tumor lysis syndrome - this drug may act on the cancer cells very quickly. This may affect how your kidneys work. Your doctor will monitor your kidney function.

Important Information

  • This drug may be present in the saliva, tears, sweat, urine, stool, vomit, semen, and vaginal secretions. Talk to your doctor and/or your nurse about the necessary precautions to take during this time.

Treating Side Effects

  • Drink plenty of fluids (a minimum of eight glasses per day is recommended).
  • If you are not able to move your bowels, check with your doctor or nurse before you use enemas, laxatives, or suppositories
  • Ask your doctor or nurse about medicines that are available to help stop or lessen constipation.
  • If you throw up or have loose bowel movements, you should drink more fluids so that you do not become dehydrated (lack water in the body from losing too much fluid).
  • To help with nausea and vomiting, eat small, frequent meals instead of three large meals a day. Choose foods and drinks that are at room temperature. Ask your nurse or doctor about other helpful tips and medicine that is available to help or stop lessen these symptoms.
  • Manage tiredness by pacing your activities for the day. Be sure to include periods of rest between energy-draining activities.
  • Mouth care is very important. Your mouth care should consist of routine, gentle cleaning of your teeth or dentures and rinsing your mouth with a mixture of 1/2 teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of water or ½ teaspoon of baking soda in 8 ounces of water. This should be done at least after each meal and at bedtime.
  • If you have mouth sores, avoid mouthwash that has alcohol. Also avoid alcohol and smoking because they can bother your mouth and throat.
  • To decrease your risk of bleeding, use a soft toothbrush. Check with your nurse before using dental floss.
  • Be very careful when using knives or tools.
  • Use an electric shaver instead of a razor.

Food and Drug Interactions

  • There are no known interactions of pralatrexate with food.
  • Check with your doctor or pharmacist about all other prescription medicines, over-the-counter medicines (NSAID’s) and dietary supplements you are taking before starting this medicine as there are known drug interactions with pralatrexate. Also, check with your doctor or pharmacist before starting any new prescription or over-the-counter medicines, or dietary supplement to make sure that there are no interactions.

When to Call the Doctor

Call your doctor or nurse if you have any of these symptoms and/or any new or unusual symptoms:

  • Fever of 100.5 F (38 C) or higher
  • Chills
  • Wheezing or trouble breathing
  • Easy bleeding or bruising
  • Nausea that stops you from you from eating or drinking or that not relieved by prescribed medicines
  • Throwing up more than 3 times a day
  • No bowel movement in 3 days or when you feel uncomfortable
  • Signs of possible liver problems: dark urine, pale bowel movements, bad stomach pain, feeling very tired and weak, unusual itching, or yellowing of the eyes or skin
  • Signs of tumor lysis: Confusion or agitation, decreased urine, nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, muscle cramping, numbness and/or tingling, seizures
  • Decreased urine, or very dark urine
  • New rash or a rash that is not relieved by prescribed medicines
  • Decreased urine, or very dark urine
  • Bad abdominal pain, especially in upper right area
  • Pain in your mouth or throat that makes it hard to eat or drink
  • Heavy menstrual period that lasts longer than normal
  • Fatigue that interferes with your daily activities
  • If you think you are pregnant

Reproduction Warnings

  • Pregnancy warning: This drug can have harmful effects on the unborn baby. It is recommended that effective methods of birth control should be used by women of child-bearing age during cancer treatment. Let your doctor know right away if you think you may be pregnant.
  • Breast feeding warning: It is not known if this drug passes into breast milk. For this reason, women should talk to their doctor about the risks and benefits of breast feeding during treatment with this drug because this drug may enter the breast milk and cause harm to a breast feeding baby.

New May 2017