Bleomycin (Blenoxane)

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General information

Class/mechanism: Exact mechanism unknown, but suspected to inhibit DNA synthesis, with some evidence inhibition of RNA and protein synthesis. When administered intrapleurally for malignant pleural effusion, bleomycin acts as a sclerosing agent.[1][2]
Route: IV, IM, SC, intrapleural
Extravasation: irritant or neutral, depending on reference

  • 1 unit of bleomycin = 1 mg of bleomycin

For conciseness and simplicity, currently will focus on treatment regimens and not list information such as: renal/hepatic dose adjustments, metabolism (including CYP450), excretion, monitoring parameters (although this will be considered for checklists), or manufacturer. Instead, for the most current information, please refer to your preferred pharmacopeias such as Micromedex, Lexicomp, Medscape, UpToDate (courtesy of Lexicomp), or the prescribing information.[1]

Diseases for which it is used

Diseases for which it was used

Patient drug information

History of changes in FDA indication

  • 1973-07-31: Initial approval
  • 2003-03-21 (oldest label available at Drugs @ FDA): has been shown to be useful in the management of the following neoplasms either as a single agent or in proven combinations with other approved chemotherapeutic agents: squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (including mouth, tongue, tonsil, nasopharynx, oropharynx, sinus, palate, lip, buccal mucosa, gingivae, epiglottis, skin, larynx); penis; cervix; vulva; Hodgkin’s disease; non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma; testicular cancer (including embryonal cell, choriocarcinoma, and teratocarcinoma). (No supporting studies are cited)

History of changes in EMA indication

  • 1970-03-18: EURD

Also known as

  • Brand names: Blenoxane, Bleo, Bleocin, Bleocip, Bleopar, Bleowel