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How Does This Medicine Work?

Carmustine belongs to a group of medications called alkylating agents. In general, alkylating agents transfer a piece of their structure, called an alkyl group, to DNA. This causes the strands of DNA to bond to each other and become linked (known as "cross-linking"). The linked strands are unable to uncoil and separate, which is necessary for the DNA to replicate.
Because DNA replication is essential for cells to grow and multiply, alkylating medications like carmustine prevent cells from growing and multiplying.

When and How to Use It

Some general considerations to keep in mind during treatment with this drug include the following:
  • This medication comes in the form of a powder that is mixed with liquid and injected slowly through a needle inserted into a vein (an intravenous, or IV, infusion).
  • Carmustine is normally given by a trained healthcare provider in a healthcare setting, such as a hospital or clinic.
  • Your healthcare provider may give you other medicines to help prevent or lessen certain carmustine side effects. Make sure to follow your healthcare provider's instructions for taking these other medicines.
  • The carmustine infusion is given slowly to prevent pain and burning at the injection site. It will take at least two hours to receive the entire dose.
  • Avoid getting this medication on your skin. Contact may cause irritation and temporary darkening of the area. If contact does occur, wash the area with soap and water.
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be used as prescribed. This medicine works best if received on schedule. However, you may need to delay or miss a dose due to side effects.
Know the Signs - Concussion Safety

Carmustine Drug Information

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