Consumer Medicine Information
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about ETHYOL. It does not contain all of the available information.
It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have risks and benefits. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you taking ETHYOL against the benefits it is
expected to have for you.
If you have any concerns about being given this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Keep this leaflet.
You may want to read it again.
What ETHYOL is used for
ETHYOL is used to protect you from some of the side effects caused by radiation therapy and drugs used to treat cancer such
as cyclophosphamide, mitomycin-C and platinum-containing drugs.
Since these anti-cancer drugs can reduce the number of white blood cells in your body, you may get an infection or fever.
ETHYOL helps prevent you from getting infection and fever from these drugs.
ETHYOL is also used to protect the kidneys from being damaged during treatment with platinum-containing drugs.
Your doctor, however, may prescribe ETHYOL for another purpose.
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why ETHYOL has been prescribed for you.
Before you are given ETHYOL
When you must not be given it
Do not use ETHYOL if:
you are allergic to ETHYOL (amifostine)
you have low blood pressure
you are pregnant or breastfeeding
ETHYOL should not be used in children or in adults older than 70 years of age.
Before you are given it
You must tell your doctor if:
you have kidney or liver problems
you have low blood calcium levels
you have problems with your heart or blood vessels in your brain
Your doctor will check your skin for any redness or rashes before each treatment with ETHYOL.
Your doctor may want you to drink extra fluids to help prevent low blood pressure.
Your doctor may give you medicine to stop vomiting before you are given ETHYOL and while you are being treated with ETHYOL.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor if you are taking medicines to treat high blood pressure or low blood calcium levels.
Also tell your doctor if you are taking any other medicines, including medicines that you buy without a prescription from
a pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
The dose of some medications may have to be adjusted while you are being treated with ETHYOL.
If you are taking medicine to reduce blood pressure, your doctor may tell you to stop taking your blood pressure medicine
24 hours before you are given ETHYOL.
How ETHYOL is given
ETHYOL is only available with a doctor's prescription. Treatment with ETHYOL should only be carried out under the supervision
of your doctor.
The dose you are given depends on your weight and height. The dose also depends on what you are being treated for. Your
doctor will work out the correct dose for you.
ETHYOL is administered by intravenous infusion (drip into your vein) by a medical or nursing professional.
Your doctor will determine how often you will be given ETHYOL. Your dose may be adjusted by your doctor during therapy according
to your response.
Never try to inject this medicine yourself.
How long you will be given it
Your doctor will determine when your treatment should be stopped.
While you are given ETHYOL
Things you must do
Tell your doctor immediately if you develop a skin rash or hives or if you experience any difficulties breathing) while you
are being given ETHYOL.
Tell all doctors, dentists and pharmacists who are treating you that you are being treated with ETHYOL.
Things to be careful of
If you feel faint or dizzy, do not drive a car or operate machinery.
Tell your doctor, nurse or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are being given ETHYOL.
All medicines have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time they are not. You may need medical attention
if you get some of the side effects.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist any questions you may have.
During the infusion of ETHYOL the following reactions may occur:
feeling sick or vomiting
low blood pressure
Sometimes the ETHYOL drip may have to be stopped if your blood pressure is low.
Tell your doctor or nurse immediately if you have an allergic reaction such as skin rashes, hives, wheezing, throat tightness
or other breathing difficulties.
These symptoms may require immediate medical attention.
Other side effects may include:
changes in heart rate
chest tightness or pain
high blood pressure
feeling of warmth, fever
feeling of coldness or chills
convulsions or fits
low calcium levels in your blood
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients.
Tell your doctor if you notice any other side effects.
Do not be alarmed by this list of possible side effects. You may not experience any of them
After ETHYOL has been stopped
Tell your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following side effects, even if they occur several weeks after stopping
treatment with ETHYOL.
feeling sick or vomiting
low blood pressure
Tell your doctor if you notice any other effects
ETHYOL should be stored at a temperature below 25°C. Do not use beyond the expiration date.
What it looks like
ETHYOL Powder for Injection is a white powder. It is mixed with a sodium chloride solution before it is given to you.
Active ingredient: Amifostine
There are no other ingredients.
ETHYOL is available as a single vial containing 500 mg of amifostine.
Merck Sharp & Dohme (Australia) Pty Limited
54-68 Ferndell Street,
South Granville, NSW 2142
In New Zealand:
Merck Sharp & Dohme (New Zealand) Limited
P O Box 99 851
Australian Registration Numbers
AUST R 78720 (375mg)*
AUST R 63789 (500mg)
This leaflet was prepared on July 2011.
* not marketed