Cladribine is an injectable chemotherapy drug that is used to combat hairy cell leukemia, a certain type of white blood cell cancer. This drug is usually continuously injected over the course of seven days to inhibit growth of cancerous cells. It is given in the hospital so that patients can be under medical supervision while taking this drug.
Taking Claribine significantly increases the risks of getting a serious infection. This medication causes the number of white blood cells in your body to drop dramatically, which means that there are far less blood cells available to fight infections. Some patients experience excessive bleeding while on this medication.
Patients may also develop severe nerve damage after being on this medication for one month. Symptoms of nerve damage include tingling or burning in the hands and feet, weakness in the arms and legs and difficulty moving arms and legs.