Leukine (Page 2 of 9)

2.7 Preparation and Administration of LEUKINE

  • Do not administer LEUKINE simultaneously with or within 24 hours preceding cytotoxic chemotherapy or radiotherapy or within 24 hours following chemotherapy [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)].
  • LEUKINE for injection is a sterile, preservative-free lyophilized powder that requires reconstitution with 1 mL Sterile Water for Injection (without preservative), USP, to yield a clear, colorless single-dose solution or 1 mL Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (with 0.9% benzyl alcohol as preservative) to yield a clear, colorless single-dose solution.

Use only LEUKINE for injection (lyophilized powder) reconstituted with Sterile Water for Injection without preservatives when administering LEUKINE to neonates or infants to avoid benzyl alcohol exposure [see Warnings and Precautions (5.9)].

Do NOT use an in-line membrane filter for intravenous infusion of LEUKINE.

  • Store reconstituted solution under refrigeration at 2°C to 8°C (36°F to 46°F); DO NOT FREEZE.
  • In the absence of compatibility and stability information, do not add other medication to infusion solutions containing LEUKINE. Use only 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection, USP to prepare intravenous infusion solutions.
  • Parenteral drug products should be inspected visually for particulate matter and discoloration prior to administration. If particulate matter is present or the solution is discolored, the vial should not be used.

LEUKINE for Injection Preparation

Reconstitute the lyophilized powder with 1 mL of diluent. Do not mix the contents of vials reconstituted with different diluents together. Reconstitute with either Sterile Water for Injection, USP (without preservative) or Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (0.9% benzyl alcohol) for intravenous or subcutaneous administration. Discard any unused portions.

  • When reconstituted with Sterile Water for Injection, USP (without preservative) , may store the reconstituted solution refrigerated at 2°C to 8°C and must use within 24 hours following reconstitution.
  • When reconstituted with Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (0.9% benzyl alcohol) , may store the reconstituted solution refrigerated at 2°C to 8°C and must use within 20 days following reconstitution.

LEUKINE for Intravenous Administration

Dilute reconstituted LEUKINE in 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection, USP. If the final concentration of LEUKINE is less than 10 mcg/mL, add Albumin (Human) to a final concentration of 0.1% [1 mL 5% Albumin (Human) per 1 mL 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection, USP] to prevent adsorption of LEUKINE to the drug delivery system. LEUKINE for intravenous administration must be used immediately after dilution with 0.9 % Sodium Chloride Injection, USP.


  • For injection: 250 mcg of sargramostim as a white lyophilized powder in a single-dose vial for reconstitution


Do not administer LEUKINE to patients with a history of serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, to human granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor such as sargramostim, yeast-derived products, or any component of the product. Anaphylactic reactions have been reported with LEUKINE [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].


5.1 Hypersensitivity Reactions

Serious hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylactic reactions, have been reported with LEUKINE. Parenteral administration of LEUKINE should be attended by appropriate precautions in case an allergic or untoward reaction occurs. If any serious allergic or anaphylactic reaction occurs, immediately discontinue LEUKINE therapy and institute medical management. Discontinue LEUKINE permanently for patients with serious allergic reactions.

5.2 Infusion Related Reactions

LEUKINE can cause infusion-related reactions. Infusion-related reactions may be characterized by respiratory distress, hypoxia, flushing, hypotension, syncope, and/or tachycardia following the first administration of LEUKINE in a particular cycle. These signs have resolved with symptomatic treatment and usually do not recur with subsequent doses in the same cycle of treatment.

Observe closely during infusion for symptoms, particularly in patients with pre-existing lung disease. If patients display dyspnea or other acute symptoms, reduce the rate of infusion by 50%. If symptoms persist or worsen despite rate reduction, discontinue the LEUKINE infusion. If patient experiences infusion-related reaction, subsequent intravenous infusions may be administered following the standard dose schedule with careful monitoring.

5.3 Risk of Severe Myelosuppression when LEUKINE Administered within 24 hours of Chemotherapy or Radiotherapy

Due to the potential sensitivity of rapidly dividing hematopoietic progenitor cells, LEUKINE should not be administered simultaneously with or within 24 hours preceding cytotoxic chemotherapy or radiotherapy or within 24 hours following chemotherapy. In one controlled study, patients with small cell lung cancer received LEUKINE and concurrent thoracic radiotherapy and chemotherapy or the identical radiotherapy and chemotherapy without LEUKINE. The patients randomized to LEUKINE had significantly higher incidence of adverse reactions, including higher mortality and a higher incidence of grade 3 and 4 infections and grade 3 and 4 thrombocytopenia.

5.4 Effusions and Capillary Leak Syndrome

Edema, capillary leak syndrome, and pleural and/or pericardial effusion, have been reported in patients after LEUKINE administration. In 156 patients enrolled in placebo-controlled studies using LEUKINE at a dose of 250 mcg/m2 /day by 2-hour IV infusion, the reported incidences of fluid retention (LEUKINE vs. placebo) were as follows: peripheral edema, 11% vs. 7%; pleural effusion, 1% vs. 0%; and pericardial effusion, 4% vs. 1%. Capillary leak syndrome was not observed in this limited number of studies; based on other uncontrolled studies and reports from users of marketed LEUKINE, the incidence is estimated to be less than 1%. In patients with preexisting pleural and pericardial effusions, administration of LEUKINE may aggravate fluid retention; however, fluid retention associated with or worsened by LEUKINE has been reversible after interruption or dose reduction of LEUKINE with or without diuretic therapy. LEUKINE should be used with caution in patients with preexisting fluid retention, pulmonary infiltrates, or congestive heart failure. Body weight and hydration status should be carefully monitored during LEUKINE administration.

5.5 Supraventricular Arrhythmias

Supraventricular arrhythmia has been reported in uncontrolled studies during LEUKINE administration, particularly in patients with a previous history of cardiac arrhythmia. These arrhythmias have been reversible after discontinuation of LEUKINE. Use LEUKINE with caution in patients with preexisting cardiac disease.

5.6 Leukocytosis

White blood cell counts of ≥ 50,000/mm3 were observed in patients receiving LEUKINE. Monitor complete blood counts (CBC) with differential twice per week. Base the decision whether to reduce the dose or interrupt treatment on the clinical condition of the patient [see Dosage and Administration (2.1, 2.4, 2.5, 2.6)]. Following cessation of LEUKINE therapy, excessive blood counts have returned to normal or baseline levels within 3 to 7 days.

5.7 Potential Effect on Malignant Cells

LEUKINE is a growth factor that primarily stimulates normal myeloid precursors. However, the possibility that LEUKINE can act as a growth factor for any tumor type, particularly myeloid malignancies, cannot be excluded. Because of the possibility of tumor growth potentiation, precaution should be exercised when using this drug in any malignancy with myeloid characteristics.

Discontinue LEUKINE therapy if disease progression is detected during LEUKINE treatment.

5.8 Immunogenicity

Treatment with LEUKINE may induce neutralizing anti-drug antibodies. The incidence of anti-sargramostim neutralizing antibodies may be related to duration of exposure to LEUKINE. In a study of patients with normal neutrophil count and a solid tumor in complete response (an unapproved use) treated with LEUKINE for up to 12 months, 82.9% of 41 evaluable patients developed anti-sargramostim neutralizing antibodies and the myelostimulatory effect of LEUKINE was not sustained by day 155 as assessed by WBC count. Use LEUKINE for the shortest duration required [see Adverse Reactions (6.2)].

5.9 Risk of Serious Adverse Reactions in Infants Due to Benzyl Alcohol Preservative

Serious and fatal adverse reactions including “gasping syndrome” can occur in neonates and low birth weight infants treated with benzyl alcohol-preserved drugs, including LEUKINE for injection reconstituted with Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (0.9% benzyl alcohol). The “gasping syndrome” is characterized by central nervous system depression, metabolic acidosis, and gasping respirations.

Avoid administration of solutions containing benzyl alcohol (including LEUKINE for injection reconstituted with Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP [0.9% benzyl alcohol]) to neonates and low birth weight infants. Instead, administer lyophilized LEUKINE reconstituted with Sterile Water for Injection, USP [see Dosage and Administration (2.7)].

If LEUKINE for injection reconstituted with Bacteriostatic Water for Injection, USP (0.9% benzyl alcohol) must be used in neonates and low birth weight infants, consider the combined daily metabolic load of benzyl alcohol from all sources including LEUKINE (LEUKINE for injection reconstituted with Bacteriostatic Water contains 9 mg of benzyl alcohol per mL). The minimum amount of benzyl alcohol at which serious adverse reactions may occur is not known [see Use in Specific Populations (8.4) and Dosage and Administration (2.7)].

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