Description and Brand Names

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

US Brand Name

  1. Nipent


Pentostatin belongs to the group of medicines called antimetabolites. It is used to treat a type of cancer of the white blood cells called hairy cell leukemia. This medicine may be used in patients with hairy cell leukemia who have already been treated with other medicines (e.g., alpha-interferon) that did not work well.

Pentostatin interferes with the growth of cancer cells, which are eventually destroyed. Since the growth of normal body cells may also be affected by pentostatin, other effects may also occur. Some of these may be serious and must be reported to your doctor. Other effects may not be serious but may cause concern. Some effects may not occur for months or years after the medicine is used.

Before you begin treatment with pentostatin, you and your doctor should talk about the good this medicine will do as well as the risks of using it.

This medicine is to be administered only by or under the immediate supervision of your doctor.

Once a medicine has been approved for marketing for a certain use, experience may show that it is also useful for other medical problems. Although these uses are not included in product labeling, pentostatin is used in certain patients with the following medical conditions:

  • Cancers of the blood.
  • Cancers of the lymph system (a part of the body's immune system), including a type that affects the skin.
  • Chronic graft versus host disease, in corticosteroid-refractory (steroids not effective to treat condition) pediatric patients.

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Powder for Solution