Description and Brand Names

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

US Brand Name

  1. Leukine


Sargramostim is a synthetic (man-made) version of a substance that is naturally produced in your body called a colony stimulating factor. It helps the bone marrow to make new white blood cells .

When certain cancer medicines are used to fight cancer cells, they also affect the white blood cells that fight infections. Sargramostim is used to prevent or reduce the risk of infection while you are being treated with cancer medicines. This medicine is also used to help the bone marrow recover after a bone marrow transplantation, and for a process called peripheral blood progenitor cell collection in cancer patients .

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription .

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Powder for Solution
  • Solution

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:


Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.


Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatrics-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of sargramostim in children. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in babies younger than 4months of age .


Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatrics-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of sargramostim in the elderly .

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Vincristine
  • Vincristine Sulfate Liposome

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Bone marrow hyperplasia—Should not be used. Will result to higher risk of serious side effect in patients with this condition .
  • Congestive heart failure or
  • Edema (fluid retention) or
  • Heart disease or
  • Heart rhythm problems, history of or
  • Hypoxia (decreased oxygen in the tissues) or
  • Kidney disease or
  • Liver disease or
  • Lung disease or breathing problems or
  • Pericardial effusion (fluid around the heart) or
  • Pleural effusion (fluid around the lungs)—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse .

Proper Use

A nurse or other trained health professional may give you this medicine. Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given through a needle placed in one of your veins .


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 .

Tell your doctor about all the other medicines you are using, especially if you are being treated for cancer. This medicine should not be given at the same time as chemotherapy or radiotherapy or within 24 hours before or after you receive your cancer treatment .

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  1. Abdominal pain
  2. black, tarry stools
  3. bloating or swelling of face, arms, hands, lower legs, or feet
  4. blood in eye
  5. bloody nose
  6. bloody stools
  7. blurred vision
  8. body aches or pain
  9. bone pain
  10. chest pain
  11. cloudy urine
  12. congestion
  13. cough
  14. decrease in urine output or decrease in urine-concentrating ability
  15. difficult or labored breathing
  16. drowsiness
  17. dry mouth
  18. dryness or soreness of throat
  19. eye pain
  20. fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeat or pulse
  21. fatigue
  22. fever
  23. flushed, dry skin
  24. fruit-like breath odor
  25. hoarseness
  26. increased hunger
  27. increased thirst
  28. increased urination
  29. irregular heartbeat
  30. large amount of cholesterol in the blood
  31. loss of appetite
  32. mood or mental changes
  33. muscle spasms [tetany] or twitching seizures
  34. nausea or vomiting
  35. rapid weight gain
  36. redness in whites of eyes
  37. runny nose
  38. shortness of breath
  39. sweating
  40. tender, swollen glands in neck
  41. tightness in chest
  42. tingling of hands or feet
  43. trouble in swallowing
  44. troubled breathing
  45. trembling
  46. unusual tiredness or weakness
  47. unusual weight gain or loss
  48. voice changes
  49. vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
  50. wheezing
  51. yellow eyes or skin

Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:

Symptoms of overdose

  1. General feeling of discomfort or illness
  2. headache
  3. rash

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  1. Chills
  2. diarrhea
  3. difficulty in moving
  4. fear or nervousness
  5. itching skin
  6. lack or loss of strength
  7. muscle pain or stiffness
  8. pain in joints
  9. sleeplessness
  10. trouble sleeping
  11. unable to sleep

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.