Proper Use

Drug information provided by: IBM Micromedex

Use this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, and do not use it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.

This medicine comes with a Medication Guide and patient instructions. Read and follow the instructions carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.

Your doctor may want you to take folic acid before starting treatment with this medicine.

Swallow the capsule or tablet whole. Do not crush, break, chew, or open it.

If you cannot swallow the tablet whole, you may dissolve it with a small quantity of water in a teaspoon for about 1 minute. Swallow the mixture right away, then drink a glass of water.

Hydroxyurea capsules and tablets should be handled with care. People who are not taking this medicine should avoid touching it. To decrease your chance of touching the medicine:

  • Wear disposable gloves when handling the bottle or medicine.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after contact with the bottle or medicine.
  • Do not open the capsules or break the tablets. Avoid exposure to crushed, broken, or opened capsules or tablets.
  • If you touch an opened capsule or crushed tablet, wash your skin right away with soap and water.
  • If powder from the capsule or crushed tablets get into your eyes, rinse them with water or an isotonic eyewash for at least 15 minutes.
  • If powder from the capsule or broken tablet is spilled, wipe it up right away with a damp disposable towel. Place the towel and the empty capsule in a closed container, such as a plastic bag.
  • The area where the powder spilled should be cleaned 3 times using a detergent solution followed by clean water.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For cancer of the head and neck:
    • For oral dosage form (capsules):
      • Adults—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is 15 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight per day, taken as a single dose. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
  • For chronic myelocytic leukemia (CML):
    • For oral dosage form (capsules):
      • Adults—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is 15 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight per day, taken as a single dose. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
  • For sickle cell anemia:
    • For oral dosage form (capsules):
      • Adults—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. At first, the dose is 15 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight per day, taken as a single dose. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 35 mg per kg of body weight per day.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For oral dosage form (tablets):
      • Adults and children 2 years of age and older—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. At first, 20 milligrams (mg) per kilogram (kg) once a day. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed.
      • Children younger than 2 years of age—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Store the broken tablets in the bottle and use them within 3 months. Throw away any unused broken tablet after 3 months.