Gleevec (Imatinib) is used to treat chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). It is also used to treat other types of cancer. Imatinib belongs to a family of medications called protein tyrosine kinase inhibitors. It works by turning off an enzyme that causes cells to become cancerous and multiply.
We currently have the brand Gleevec from India and Turkey also called Glivec manufactured by Novartis. The generic Imatinib comes from India also called Imatib by Cipla and Veenat by Natco Pharma, the generic from Canada also called Apo-imatinib is manufactured by Apotex. Gleevac is available in the strength of 100 mg and 400 mg tablets.
"Imatinib is a generic drug used to treat certain cancers. It is manufactured by licensed generic manufacturers. This product DOES NOT originate from Novartis and IS NOT authorized by Novartis, the owner and maker of the branded Gleevec prescription pharmaceutical product."
Common side effects include:
• Changes in vision;
• Low blood pressure;
• Pain in the muscles, tenderness;
• Red, itchy eye
Serious side effects include:
• Bleeding or bruising without suffering from any injury;
• Chest pain;
• Coughing up blood;
• Severe skin reactions;
• Signs of heart failure
You should not take Gleevec if you are allergic to Imatinib or if you have any other allergies. Before you start taking this medication, talk to your doctor about your medical history and about all the medications you take including OTC and herbal medications. This medication may make you dizzy, drowsy or blur your vision. Alcohol and marijuana can make you dizzier. You should not drive, use machinery or do any activity that requires you to be alert. Limit alcoholic beverages. This medication may make it more likely to get infections or worsen the current infections you have. Do not have any vaccinations without talking to your doctor. Avoid contact with people who have received live vaccines recently. This medication may slow down a child’s growth. Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication. Inform your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant because this medication may harm an unborn baby. Pregnant women or women who may become pregnant should not handle this medication or breathe the dust from the tablets. Imatinib passes into breast milk. Do not breast-feed during treatment and for one month after your last dose. Talk to your doctor before breast-feeding.