Mercaptopurine - Drug Information

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General Information on Mercaptopurine

Generic Name : Mercaptopurine

Pronunciation : mer kap toe pyoor' een

Latest prescription information about Mercaptopurine. Learn how to pronounce the drug's name, its indications, dosage, how to take, when to take, when not to take, side effects, special precautions, its storage instructions and warnings if any when taken during pregnancy. Also listed are the International and Indian trade name(s) of the drug and its price list.
ICD Code : Y43.1 | Therapeutic Classification : Antimetabolites

Trade Names/Brand Names of Mercaptopurine

Why is Mercaptopurine Prescribed? (Indications)

This medication is an antimetabolite, prescribed for acute lymphatic leukemia either alone or with other medications.  It works by stopping the growth of cancer cells.

When should Mercaptopurine not to be taken? (Contraindications)

Contraindicated in patients who have prior resistance to this drug, and hypersensitivity.

Pregnancy Category

A B C D X

Category D :

There is an evidence of fetal risk based on adverse reaction data, but potential benefits may allow the drug to be used in pregnant women despite risks.

What is the dosage of Mercaptopurine?

Adult: PO- Acute lymphatic Leukemia: Usual maintenance dose: Initial: 1.5-2.5 mg/kg/day, may increase carefully up to 5 mg/kg/day.
Crohn's disease Initial: 1-1.5 mg/kg/day. Up to 125 mg/day.

How should Mercaptopurine be taken?

It comes as a tablet to take by mouth, on an empty stomach.

What are the warnings and precautions for Mercaptopurine?

Caution should be exercised in patients with history of bone marrow problems, anemia, low white blood cell or platelet levels, unusual bruising or bleeding, liver or kidney problems, infections, any allergy, during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Avoid contact with people who have infections.
It may reduce platelet counts; to prevent bleeding avoid injury or bruising.
Patient may develop with increased risk other than cancer; if any unusual tumor appears consult with your doctor immediately.
Avoid vaccination while taking this medication.
Monitor blood cell counts, liver function tests, and TPMT enzyme activity regularly while taking this medication.

What are the side effects of Mercaptopurine?

   Serious Effects : Bone marrow depression and liver damage.
   Genitourinary : Abnormally elevated blood level of uric acid.
   Gastrointestinal : Intestinal ulceration, nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.
   Miscellaneous : Hair loss and decrease in sperm count.

What are the other precautions for Mercaptopurine?

Avoid excess dosage.

What are the storage conditions of Mercaptopurine?

Store it at controlled room temperature (15 to 25C).


Schedule : G

Drugs that are to be used only under medical supervision.

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