Precautions and Warnings With Tesamorelin
If you have diabetes, cancer, or recently had irradiation on the head, you may need to avoid tesamorelin. Warnings and precautions also apply to people who have had surgery on the pituitary gland or other pituitary-related problems. Women who are breastfeeding and women who are pregnant should also avoid this drug.
What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?Talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking tesamorelin acetate (Egrifta™) if you have:
- Active cancer or tumors, or have ever had cancer
- Undergone pituitary gland surgery
- Had head irradiation
- Experienced head trauma
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- Liver disease, such as hepatitis, cirrhosis, or liver failure
- Other medical conditions
- Any allergies, including to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant.
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any medications you are taking, including prescription and nonprescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Specific Precautions and Warnings With TesamorelinSome warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking this drug include the following:
- Tesamorelin increases the release of growth hormone. Growth hormone may have the potential to increase the growth of cancerous cells. People with cancer should not take tesamorelin. People with noncancerous tumors should discuss the risks and benefits of using this drug with their healthcare provider before beginning treatment.
- Tesamorelin increases blood concentrations of insulin growth factor 1 (IGF-1). The effects this could have on the development of cancer tissue are unknown. If IGF-1 levels become too high after starting tesamorelin, you may have to stop treatment with this medication. Discuss IGF-1 monitoring with your healthcare provider.
- Fluid retention may occur in people taking tesamorelin. These symptoms can include:
- Swelling of the legs, feet, or arms
- Severe joint pain or pain or numbness in your wrists or hands.
- This medication may cause increased and uncontrolled blood sugar. In clinical trials tesamorelin was shown to increase the risk of diabetes. Thus, people with diabetes should use this product with caution.
- If you become severely ill, your healthcare provider may recommend that you stop taking tesamorelin. Increased death rates were shown in people with open heart surgeries, abdominal surgery, and accident trauma while using this drug.
- Injection site reactions (such as pain and swelling) are common with this medication. Rotating the injection sites can help reduce this risk.
- Allergic reactions occur in some people taking tesamorelin. Seek medical attention if you experience any of the following:
- Hives or itching
- Flushing or redness
- Difficulty breathing.
- Tell your healthcare provider if you do not see a clear reduction in stomach fat (measured by the distance around the waist) with tesamorelin. If the medication is not working well for you, then the risks probably outweigh the benefits.
- It is unknown how (or even if) tesamorelin may react with other medications (see Drug Interactions With Tesamorelin).
- Women with HIV are advised against breastfeeding their infants. It is unknown if tesamorelin passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider (see Egrifta and Breastfeeding).
- Tesamorelin is considered a pregnancy Category X medication. This means that it should not be used during pregnancy (see Egrifta and Pregnancy).