Campath is a monoclonal antibody drug, which was approved by the FDA in 2001 to treat cutaneous T-cell Lymphoma (CTCL) and T-cell Lymphoma. It is manufactured by Schering and Genzyme Corp., and doctors have also prescribed Campath for the off-label use of treating multiple sclerosis (MS).

In 2005, the manufacturers of Campath suspended a trial after three cases of serious side effects were recorded. In this study, researchers found three cases of Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP). ITP occurs when patients experience a low platelet count, which can cause abnormal bleeding. The manufacturer was then required to notify doctors and patients about these serious risks.

Along with ITP, Campath has also been linked to serious conditions such as cardiac arrest, myocardial infarction, cardiac arrhythmias, respiratory arrest, pulmonary infiltrates, syncope, autoimmune disease, hypotension, shortness of breath and bronchospasm.

Patients taking Campath should see a doctor if one of these serious side effects occurs:

More Common:

  • Black, tarry stools
  • Blood in urine
  • Chills
  • Cough
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Faintness, or light-headedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position suddenly
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Itching, hives, or rash
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Painful or difficult urination
  • Pale skin
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sore throat
  • Sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
  • Sweating
  • Swollen glands
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Troubled breathing, exertional
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising
  • Unusual tiredness or weakness
  • Wheezing

Less common side effects:

  • Bloating or swelling of the face, hands, lower legs, and/or feet
  • Chest pain
  • Hoarseness
  • Lower back or side pain
  • Muscle weakness
  • Palpitations
  • Pounding, or irregular heartbeat or pulse
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Rash
  • Red or purple spots on the skin, varying in size and remaining after pushing the skin surface

Rare side effects:

  • Flushing of the face or neck
  • Swelling of the eyelids, face, or lips
  • White patches on the tongue, in the mouth, or in folds of the skin, including the genitals

Incidence not determined:

  • Back pain
  • Blindness
  • Blurred vision
  • Chest discomfort or pain
  • Confusion
  • Convulsions
  • Decreased urine output
  • Decreased vision
  • Dilated neck veins
  • Drowsiness
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Eye pain
  • Feeling of discomfort
  • Inability to move the arms and legs
  • Inflammation of the joints
  • Irregular breathing
  • Joint pain, stiffness, or swelling
  • Muscle aches or pain
  • Numbness, pain, tingling, or weakness
  • Painful glands
  • Spitting up blood
  • Sudden numbness and weakness in the arms and legs
  • Swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs

Other side effects associated with Campath are:

  • Lymphopenia
  • Neutropenia
  • Anemia
  • Thrombocytopenia
  • Pyrexia
  • Chills
  • CMV viremia3
  • CMV infection
  • Urticaria
  • Rash
  • Erythema
  • Hypotension
  • Hypertension
  • Headache
  • Tremor
  • Dyspnea
  • Diarrhea
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Tachycardia
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