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Fungizone Intravenous (Amphotericin)

What Fungizone Intravenous is and what it is used for

The name of your medicine is Fungizone Intravenous. Fungizone Intravenous contains the active ingredient amphotericin, which belongs to a group of medicines called anti-fungal antibiotics.

Fungizone Intravenous is used to treat serious infections caused by yeasts and certain fungi.

Before being given your medicine

You should not be given this medicine if you:

  • are allergic (hypersensitive) to amphotericin or any of the other ingredients of Fungizone Intravenous

Take special care with Fungizone Intravenous if you: have any kidney or liver problems

If this applies to you, talk to your doctor before being given Fungizone Intravenous.

Taking other medicines

Always tell your doctor or pharmacist about other medicines you may be taking or have recently taken including those obtained without a prescription. This is especially important if you are taking:

  • any anti-cancer medicines (methotrexate, cyclophosphamide, cisplatin)
  • any medicines which affect your kidney function (e.g. gentamicin, vancomycin)
  • any muscle relaxants (e.g. baclofen, dantrolene, diazepam)
  • any corticosteroids (e.g. beclamethasone)
  • any medicines to treat heart failure (e.g. digoxin)
  • a medicine called flucytosine used to treat fungal infections

If you have recently had a specific type of transfusion called a leukocyte transfusion, please tell your doctor.

Pregnancy and breast-feeding

If you are pregnant, think you may be pregnant, or if you are breast-feeding, speak to your doctor before being given Fungizone Intravenous.

Driving and operating machinery

Fungizone Intravenous should not affect your ability to drive.

Important Information about some of the ingredients of Fungizone Intravenous:

This medicinal product contains less than 1 mmol sodium (23mg) per dose, i.e. essentially ‘sodium- free’.

How you will be given your medicine

Fungizone Intravenous will be given to you in hospital by a doctor or nurse. If you have any concerns about the amount of medicine you have been given, please speak to the person who has given you the infusion for further advice.

The daily dose is 0.25-1.5mg per kg of your body weight.

It will be given to you slowly through a drip into a vein (an infusion). This will usually take between 2-4 hours.

A test dose may be given before you start treatment with this medicine.   Several months of treatment is usually necessary to get rid of the infection completely.

In some patients, the doctor may give other medicines to help reduce other unwanted effects. These include:

  • medicines to help stop you feeling sick or being sick,
  • aspirin,
  • an anti-allergy medicine (antihistamine),
  • a corticosteroid
  • a medicine to stop your blood from clotting (anticoagulant).

Possible side effects

Like all medicines, Fungizone Intravenous can cause side effects, although not everybody gets them.

Treatment with Fungizone Intravenous may affect your blood cells, kidneys, liver or heart.   For this reason, your doctor will want to monitor all these things before, during and after giving you this medicine.

If you notice any of the following, contact your doctor immediately:

  • swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • skin reactions including, severe rash and itching
  • difficulty breathing

As these may be signs of an allergic reaction.

There have been reports of blood disorders which may be characterised by fever or chills, sore throat, ulcers in the mouth or throat, unusual tiredness or weakness, unusual bleeding or unexplained bruises. Tell your doctor immediately if you notice these symptoms.

Fungizone Intravenous can cause kidney problems. If you notice that you are more thirsty, need to go to the toilet more frequently, or the volume of urine increases, tell your doctor immediately.

The most common side effects experienced with Fungizone Intravenous are:

  • high temperature (sometimes with shaking chills) headache
  • loss of appetite, weight loss feeling sick and being sick pain in muscles and joints generally feeling unwell stomach cramps, indigestion diarrhoea
  • pain at the injection site, with swollen veins a rare form of anaemia where there is a low level of red blood cells
  • kidney problems which may lead to abnormal urine production,  kidney stones and imbalances of substances in the blood (e.g. potassium).

Less common side effects experienced with Fungizone Intravenous are:

  • irregular heartbeat, sometimes severe, heart attack
  • high or low blood pressure hearing loss, ringing in the ears blurred or double vision short-lived spinning sensation (vertigo) convulsions altered mental state flushing liver failure
  • numbness, pain or tingling in the hands or feet bloody stools or vomiting blood (may indicate bleeding form the stomach or gut)

If any of the side effects become serious, or if you notice any side effects not listed in this leaflet, please tell your doctor.

How to store your medicine

This medicine will be prepared in a special area before the doctor or nurse gives it to you. After being mixed together the medicine will be kept for no more than 8 hours at room temperature (25°C) or 24 hours in a refrigerator (2-8°C).

Unopened product will be stored in a refrigerator (2-8°C) in the pharmacy and should not be used after the expiry date shown on the carton/label.

Further information

What Fungizone Intravenous contains

Each vial of Fungizone Intravenous contains 50 mg (50,000 units) of the active ingredient amphotericin. In addition Fungizone Intravenous contains the following inactive ingredients: desoxycholic acid, phosphoric acid, sodium hydroxide, sodium phosphate

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