Methotrexate interferes with the growth of certain cells of the body, especially cells that reproduce quickly, such as cancer cells, bone marrow cells, and skin cells.
Methotrexate is used to treat certain types of cancer of the breast, skin, head and neck, or lung. Methotrexate is also used to treat severe psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis.
How to use
Use Methotrexate as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
Take Methotrexate by mouth with or without food. However, you should take it the same way each time in relation to food.
Drinking extra fluids while you are taking Methotrexate is recommended. Check with your doctor for instructions.
Be sure you understand exactly how much of Methotrexate to take and how often you should take it. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
It may take several weeks for your symptoms to improve. Do not stop taking Methotrexate without checking with your doctor.
Methotrexate works best if each dose is taken at the scheduled time.
Continue to take Methotrexate even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Methotrexate is an antimetabolite. It works to treat cancer and psoriasis by blocking an enzyme needed for cell growth. This helps to slow the growth of cancer cells and abnormal skin cells. Exactly how Methotrexate works to treat rheumatoid arthritis is unknown. It reduces symptoms of inflammation (e.g., pain, swelling, stiffness) caused by rheumatoid arthritis.
If you miss a dose of Methotrexate, skip the missed dose. Go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Sore Methotrexate at 77 degrees F (25 degrees C). Brief storage between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) is permitted. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Methotrexate out of the reach of children and away from pets.
Possible Side Effects
Check with your doctor if any of these most common side effects persist or become bothersome:
dizziness; headache; loss of appetite; mild hair loss; nausea; stomach pain or upset; tiredness; vomiting.
Seek medical attention right away if any of these severe side effects occur:
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); black, tarry stools; blood in the urine; calf or leg pain or swelling; change in the amount of urine; chest pain; coma; confusion; coughing up blood; dark urine; diarrhea; difficult or painful urination; dry cough; fever, chills, or sore throat; menstrual changes; mental or mood changes; mouth sores; one-sided weakness; red, swollen, peeling, or blistered skin; seizures; severe or persistent nausea or vomiting; shortness of breath; speech changes; unusual bleeding or bruising; unusual pain and discoloration of the skin; unusual tiredness or weakness; vision changes or vision loss; yellowing of skin or eyes.
Methotrexate is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
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