What is this medication?
Antineoplastic Agent, Antimetabolite (Antifolate)
Indicated for treatment of mesothelioma; non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), nonsquamous.
How does this medication work?
Pemetrexed, Alimta is an antifolate that disrupts folate-dependent metabolic processes essential for cell replication. Pemetrexed, Alimta inhibits dihydrofolate reductase, glycinamide ribonucleotide formyltransferase, thymidylate synthase, and aminoimidazole carboxamide ribonucleotide formyltransferase. These enzymes are involved in folate metabolism and DNA synthesis and inhibiting them results in inhibition of purine and thymidine nucleotide and protein synthesis.
How should I take this medication?
IV: 500 mg/m2 on day 1 of each 21-day cycle (in combination with cisplatin); continue until disease progression or unacceptable toxicity
How to Take: Infuse over 10 minutes. When used in combination with platinum-based therapy (cisplatin or carboplatin), administer pemetrexed prior to the platinum. Administer pemetrexed after pembrolizumab if administered on the same day. Initiate folic acid supplementation 1 week before first dose of pemetrexed, continue for full course of therapy, and for 21 days after last pemetrexed dose. Institute vitamin B12 1 week before the first dose; administer every 9 weeks thereafter.
You Need to Avoid: New treatment cycles should not begin unless ANC ≥1,500/mm3, platelets ≥100,000/mm3, CrCl ≥45 mL/minute, and recovery of nonhematologic toxicity to ≤ grade 2.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Before starting Pemetrexed, Alimta make sure your physician is aware of any allergies or medications you currently take, if you have renal impairment, third space fluid, are pregnant, or breastfeeding. Pemetrexed, Alimta use has been associated with rare but serious adverse events such as bone marrow suppression, cutaneous reactions, gastrointestinal toxicity, hypersensitivity reactions, nephrotoxicity, pulmonary toxicity, and radiation recall.
What if I miss a dose?
It is important to get each dose of this medication as scheduled. If you miss a dose, call your doctor for instructions if you miss an appointment for your pemetrexed injection.
How should I store this medication?
Store intact vials at 25°C (77°F); excursions permitted to 15°C to 30°C (59°F to 86°F). Reconstituted solution and solution diluted for infusion are stable for 24 hours when refrigerated at 2°C to 8°C (36°F to 46°F).
What are the possible side effects of using this medication?
Fatigue, desquamation, skin rash, nausea, anorexia, vomiting, stomatitis, diarrhea, anemia, neutropenia, pharyngitis.alimta
Note this is not a complete list of side effects, only the most common.
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