Revlimid Side Effects
Studies on Revlimid have shown that low blood cell counts, diarrhea, and fatigue are some of the most common problems that may occur with this drug. While some people will not experience problems, most people will develop some type of side effect during Revlimid treatment. Serious problems can also occur, such as chest pain and a potentially life-threatening skin reaction, which require medical treatment immediately.
An Introduction to Revlimid Side EffectsJust like any medicine, Revlimid® (lenalidomide) can cause side effects. Although not everyone who uses the drug will have problems, the majority of people will experience some type of Revlimid side effect during treatment.
If reactions do occur, in most cases, they are mild and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with Revlimid. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)
Common Side Effects With RevlimidRevlimid has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in a group of people taking Revlimid were carefully documented and, in some trials, compared to the side effects that occurred in a similar group of people taking a capsule that did not contain any active ingredients (a placebo). As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred, how often they appeared, and how they compared to the placebo.
In these studies, the most common Revlimid side effects included:
- Low platelets in the blood (which could cause increased bruising or bleeding) -- in up to 61.5 percent
- Low white blood cell count (which could increase the risk for infection) -- up to 58.8 percent
- Diarrhea -- up to 48.6 percent
- Fatigue -- up to 43.9 percent
- Itching -- up to 41.9 percent
- Constipation -- up to 40.5 percent
- A rash -- up to 35.8 percent
- Muscle cramps -- up to 33.4 percent
- Anemia (low red blood cell count) -- up to 31.4 percent
- Nausea -- up to 30 percent.
Other common side effects, occurring in 6.5 percent to 27.5 percent of people, included but were not limited to:
- Swelling of the arms, hands, legs, ankles, or feet
- Back pain
- Shortness of breath
- Upper respiratory tract infections, such as the common cold
- A rash
- Joint pain
- A metallic taste in the mouth
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Blurred vision
- Sore throat
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Bone pain
- Arm and leg pain
- Reduced sense of touch
- Low blood potassium levels
- Dry skin
- Abdominal (stomach) pain
- Lack of strength
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs, such as a bladder infection)
- Increased sweating
- Chest pain
- Lack of energy
- Dry mouth
- Numbness, tingling, or burning sensations in the hands or feet
- Changes in blood pressure.