It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
This medicine may cause a serious type of allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Tell your doctor or nurse right away if you have chills; fever; lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting; fast, pounding heartbeat; swelling of the face, tongue, and throat; or trouble with breathing after you receive the medicine.
If teniposide accidentally leaks out of the vein into which it is injected, it may damage some tissues and may cause scarring. Tell the doctor right away if you notice redness, pain, or swelling at the injection site.
While you are being treated with teniposide, and after you stop treatment, do not have any immunizations (vaccinations) without your doctor's approval. Teniposide may lower your body's resistance, and there is a chance you might get the infection the immunization is meant to prevent. In addition, other persons living in your household should not take oral polio vaccine, since there is a chance they could pass the polio virus on to you. Also, avoid persons who have taken oral polio vaccine within the last several months. Do not get close to them, and do not stay in the same room with them for very long. If you cannot take these precautions, you should consider wearing a protective face mask that covers the nose and mouth.
This medicine can cause birth defects if it is used by the mother while she is pregnant or by the father when his sexual partner becomes pregnant. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If a pregnancy occurs while you are using this medicine, tell your doctor right away.
This medicine may cause a decrease in the amount of sperm you ejaculate during sex. This may affect your ability to have children. Ask your doctor on whether you can store sperm for future artificial use.
Hypotension (low blood pressure) may occur with this medicine. Your doctor will measure your blood pressure and keep it from going too low while you are receiving this medicine.
Teniposide can temporarily lower the number of white blood cells in your blood, increasing the chance of getting an infection. It can also lower the number of platelets, which are necessary for proper blood clotting. If this occurs, there are certain precautions you can take, especially when your blood count is low, to reduce the risk of infection or bleeding:
- If you can, avoid people with infections. Check with your doctor immediately if you think you are getting an infection or if you get a fever or chills, cough or hoarseness, lower back or side pain, or painful or difficult urination.
- Check with your doctor immediately if you see any unusual bleeding or bruising; black, tarry stools; blood in urine or stools; or pinpoint red spots on your skin.
- Be careful when using a regular toothbrush, dental floss, or toothpick. Your doctor may show you other ways to clean your teeth and gums. Check with your medical doctor before having any dental work done.
- Do not touch your eyes or the inside of your nose unless you have just washed your hands and have not touched anything else in the meantime.
- Be careful not to cut yourself when you are using sharp objects such as a safety razor or fingernail or toenail cutters.
- Avoid contact sports or other situations where bruising or injury could occur.