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Why is this medication prescribed?
Some kinds of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (CSCC; skin cancer) that have progressed to neighboring tissues and cannot be effectively treated with surgery or radiation therapy, or that have spread to other regions of the body, are treated with cemiplimab-rwlc injection. It is also used to treat basal cell carcinoma when it cannot be surgically removed, when it has spread to other areas of the body after being treated with another drug, or when that drug is ineffective. A specific type of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) that has spread to nearby tissues and cannot be removed by surgery, treated with chemotherapy, or treated with radiation or has spread to other parts of the body is also treated with cemiplimab-rwlc injection, either alone or in conjunction with platinum-containing chemotherapy. Monoclonal antibodies are a family of drugs that includes cemiplimab-rwlc injection. It stops the spread of cancer.
How should this medicine be used?
A doctor or nurse can administer cemiplimab-rwlc injection intravenously (into a vein) over the course of 30 minutes at a hospital or infusion center. Typically, it is given every three weeks.
If you suffer specific adverse effects, your doctor may need to reduce the rate of your infusion or discontinue your therapy altogether. If you develop any of the following symptoms during or after your infusion: shivering or chills, fever, rash, itching, flushing, feeling faint, nausea, back or neck discomfort, shortness of breath, disorientation, wheezing, or face swelling, call your doctor right once.
Depending on how you react to the drug and any side effects you experience, your doctor may postpone or stop your cemiplimab-rwlc injectable treatment. Discuss your feelings before, during, and following therapy with your doctor.
As you start cemiplimab-rwic injectable therapy and after each dosage, your doctor or pharmacist will provide you the manufacturer’s patient information leaflet (Medication Guide). If you have any questions, carefully read the material and contact your doctor or pharmacist. The Medication Guide is also available on the manufacturer’s website or the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website.
Other uses for this medicine
Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details if you believe this drug should be used for something else.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before receiving cemiplimab-rwlc injection,
- If you have any allergies, including to cemiplimab-rwlc injection, other drugs, or any of the substances in cemiplimab-rwlc injection, notify your doctor very away. For a list of the ingredients, consult the Medication Guide or speak with your pharmacist.
- Inform your doctor and pharmacist about any additional prescription and over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, dietary supplements, and herbal products you are now taking or intend to use. Your physician might need to adjust the dosage of your drugs or keep a close eye on you for side effects.
- Inform your physician whether you have ever undergone an organ transplant or have ever undergone an allogeneic stem cell transplant, which involves donor stem cells. Moreover, let your doctor know if you now have or have ever had diabetes, Crohn’s disease (a disorder in which the body attacks the lining of the digestive tract, resulting in pain, diarrhea, weight loss, and fever), ulcerative colitis, or radiation therapy to the chest, lupus (a condition in which the body attacks many of its own organs), a disorder of the nervous system like myasthenia gravis or Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS; characterized by weakness, tingling, and potentially paralysis due to sudden nerve damage), a lung condition or breathing issues, or thyroid, liver, or kidney disease.
- If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, let your doctor know. Pregnancy should not occur when having cemiplimab-rwlc injection. A pregnancy test is required before you start taking this medicine. Employ reliable birth control during your cemiplimab-rwlc injectable therapy and for four months following your last dosage. Call your doctor if you get pregnant while having cemiplimab-rwlc injectable. A cemiplimab-rwlc injection could be harmful to the fetus.
- If you are breastfeeding, let your doctor know. While receiving cemiplimab-rwlc injectable therapy and for four months following your final dosage, your doctor will advise against breastfeeding.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Keep eating normally unless your doctor instructs you otherwise.
What side effects can this medication cause?
The injection of cemiplimab-rwlc may have unwanted effects. If any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away, let your doctor know right once:
- Hair fall
- Back, muscular, joint, or bone pain
Certain adverse effects can be very harmful. Call your doctor right away or seek emergency medical attention if you suffer any of these symptoms or any of those listed in the HOW section:
- Shortness of breath, chest pain, an irregular heartbeat, or a cough
- Abdominal ache or tenderness; diarrhea; feces that are black, tarry, sticky, or contain blood or mucous
- Yellow eyes or skin, extreme nausea or vomiting, black urine, weight loss, unusual bruising or bleeding, or right upper stomach pain are all symptoms to watch out for
- Fever or flu-like symptoms, a rash, blistering skin, itching, swollen lymph nodes, painful sores or ulcers in the mouth, nose, throat, or genital region
- Reduced urine production, ankle swelling, blood in the pee, and appetite loss
- Persistent migraines or peculiar headaches; experiencing unusually high levels of hunger or thirst, excessive sweating, intense exhaustion, frequent urination, or weight fluctuations
- Eye pain, changes in vision, double vision, light sensitivity, hazy vision, or double vision
- Feeling chilly, thickening of voice or hoarseness, hair loss, agitation, fainting or dizziness, rapid heartbeat, amnesia, or changes in sex desire
- Bewilderment, exhaustion, memory issues, mood or behavioral changes, stiff neck, balance issues, or tingling or numbness in the arms or legs
- Chronic muscle aches, fatigue, or cramping
Further negative effects from cemiplimab-rwlc injection are possible. If you have any strange side effects while taking this medicine, call your doctor right away.
You or your doctor can submit a report to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online or by phone if you have a serious side event.
In case of emergency/overdose
Call the poison control hotline at 1-800-222-1222 in the event of an overdose. Moreover, information can be found online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. Call 911 right once if the person has collapsed, experienced a seizure, is having difficulty breathing, or cannot be roused.
What other information should I know?
Keep all of your appointments with your physician and the lab. Before you start treatment for NSCLC, your doctor will run a lab test to determine whether cemiplimab-rwlc can be used to treat your cancer. To monitor your body’s reaction to the injection of cemiplimab-rwlc, your doctor will request a number of lab tests.
Any queries you may have regarding cemiplimab-rwlc injectable, ask your pharmacist.
You should keep a written record of every medication you take, including any over-the-counter (OTC) items, prescription drugs, and dietary supplements like vitamins and minerals. This list should be brought with you whenever you see a doctor or are admitted to the hospital. You should always have this information with you in case of emergencies.