Brand names - Ciclosporin, Neoral, Sandimmune
Medication type - Immunosuppresant (cytotoxic)
Common side effects - Headache, tremor,
unusual hair growth on body and face, swelling or bleeding of gums.
Rare side effects - Nausea, vomiting,
diarrhoea, acne or oily skin, sinus inflammation or infection, leg
cramps, enlargement and tenderness of the breasts in males (gynecomastia).
Serious side effects - Frequent urge
to urinate; fever or chills; yellow-tinged eyes and skin caused
by liver problems; abnormal bleeding; fatigue; high blood pressure.
Call your doctor immediately. Psoriasis patients formerly treated
with other types of therapy (for example, ultraviolet light or methotrexate)
are at increased risk of skin cancer; report any new skin lesion
to your doctor immediately.
Uses - Used to treat severe rheumatoid
arthritis or SLE that has not responded to other drug therapy. Cyclosporine
suppresses the functioning of the bodys immune system.
Food interactions - Do not take cyclosporine
with grapefruit juice.
Other notes - Cyclosporine can be taken
with food to avoid stomach upset. Prolonged use of cyclosporine
may impair kidney function. Periodic examinations and laboratory
tests are required. Avoid alcohol. Cyclosporine has been shown to
cause serious birth defects in animals. Adequate human studies have
not been done. Avoid this drug during pregnancy unless it is clearly
needed. Cyclosporine passes into breast milk; avoid or discontinue
use while nursing. Avoid any immunizations except those approved
by your doctor. Do not use plastic or wax-lined cups to take this
medicine. Maintain good dental hygiene; this medication can cause
gum problems. Cyclosporine can make you more sensitive to sunlight.
Limit exposure until you determine how the drug affects you.