What is CALQUENCE?
(CALQUENCE) This medication is used to treat certain types of cancer (such as mantle cell lymphoma, small lymphocytic lymphoma - SLL, chronic lymphocytic leukemia - CLL). Acalabrutinib works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells. It belongs to a class of drugs known as kinase inhibitors.
How should I use CALQUENCE?
Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your pharmacist before you start using acalabrutinib and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually two times a day (about 12 hours apart). Swallow the tablet whole with a full glass of water (8 ounces/240 milliliters). Do not chew, crush, dissolve, or cut the tablets. Avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while using this medication unless your doctor or pharmacist says you may do so safely. Grapefruit can increase the chance of side effects with this medicine. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details. The dosage is based on your medical condition, response to treatment, and other medications you may be taking. Be sure to tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products). Do not increase your dose or use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, and your risk of serious side effects will increase. Take this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same times each day. Since this drug can be absorbed through the skin and lungs and may harm an unborn baby, women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant should not handle this medication or breathe the dust from the tablets.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take CALQUENCE?
Before taking acalabrutinib, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: bleeding/blood problems (such as ulcers), fast/irregular heartbeat, recent/current infection (including hepatitis, HIV infection), liver disease. This medication may increase your risk for other cancers, including skin cancer. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Acalabrutinib can make you more likely to get infections or may make current infections worse. Stay away from anyone who has an infection that may easily spread (such as chickenpox, COVID-19, measles, flu). Talk to your doctor if you have been exposed to an infection or for more details. Tell your health care professional that you are using acalabrutinib before having any immunizations/vaccinations. Avoid contact with people who have recently received live vaccines (such as flu vaccine inhaled through the nose). This drug may make you dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis). Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products). Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug. Since this drug can be absorbed through the skin and lungs and may harm an unborn baby, women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant should not handle this medication or breathe the dust from the tablets. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You should not become pregnant while using acalabrutinib. Acalabrutinib may harm an unborn baby. Your doctor should order a pregnancy test before you start this medication. Ask about reliable forms of birth control while using this medication and for at least one week after the last dose. If you become pregnant, talk to your doctor right away about the risks and benefits of this medication. It is unknown if this drug passes into breast milk. Because of the possible risk to the infant, breast-feeding is not recommended while using this drug and for at least 2 weeks after the last dose. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
What may interact with CALQUENCE?
See also How to Use section. Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval. Other medications can affect the removal of acalabrutinib from your body, which may affect how acalabrutinib works. Examples include azole antifungals (such as ketoconazole, itraconazole, voriconazole), macrolide antibiotics (such as clarithromycin, erythromycin), HIV protease inhibitors (such as atazanavir, nelfinavir, saquinavir, indinavir), drugs to treat seizures (such as phenytoin, carbamazepine, phenobarbital), nefazodone, ritonavir, St. John's wort, telithromycin, among others.
What if I miss a dose of CALQUENCE?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember up to 3 hours past your usual dosing time. If it is more than 3 hours past your usual dosing time, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
What side effects may I notice from receiving CALQUENCE?
Headache, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, tiredness, or muscle aches may occur. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Remember that this medication has been prescribed because your doctor has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: unusual tiredness, easy or unusual bruising or bleeding (such as nose/gum bleeds, pink/dark urine, black/bloody stools, vomit that contains blood or looks like coffee grounds), signs of heart problems (such as fast/irregular heartbeat, dizziness, fainting, shortness of breath, chest discomfort). Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: weakness on one side of the body, trouble speaking, vision changes, confusion. This medication may lower your ability to fight infections. This may make you more likely to get a serious (rarely fatal) infection or make any infection you have worse. Tell your doctor right away if you have any signs of infection (such as sore throat that doesn't go away, fever, chills, cough). Although acalabrutinib is used to treat cancer, it may rarely increase your risk of developing other cancers (such as skin cancer). Tell your doctor right away if you develop unusual growths or lumps, swollen glands, sudden weight loss, night sweats, change in appearance or size of moles, or unusual skin changes/growth (see also Precautions section). A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch. In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Where should I keep CALQUENCE?
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets. Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.