Ancobon must be given with extreme caution to patients with impaired renal function. Since Ancobon is excreted primarily by the kidneys, renal impairment may lead to accumulation of the drug. Ancobon serum concentrations should be monitored to determine the adequacy of renal excretion in such patients. Dosage adjustments should be made in patients with renal insufficiency to prevent progressive accumulation of active drug.
Ancobon must be given with extreme caution to patients with bone marrow depression. Patients may be more prone to depression of bone marrow function if they: 1) have a hematologic disease, 2) are being treated with radiation or drugs which depress bone marrow, or 3) have a history of treatment with such drugs or radiation. Bone marrow toxicity can be irreversible and may lead to death in immunosuppressed patients. Frequent monitoring of hepatic function and of the hematopoietic system is indicated during therapy.
Before therapy with Ancobon is instituted, electrolytes (because of hypokalemia) and the hematologic and renal status of the patient should be determined (see WARNINGS). Close monitoring of the patient during therapy is essential.
Since renal impairment can cause progressive accumulation of the drug, blood concentrations and kidney function should be monitored during therapy. Hematologic status (leucocyte and thrombocyte count) and liver function (alkaline phosphatase, SGOT and SGPT) should be determined at frequent intervals during treatment as indicated.
Cytosine arabinoside, a cytostatic agent, has been reported to inactivate the antifungal activity of Ancobon by competitive inhibition. Drugs which impair glomerular filtration may prolong the biological half-life of flucytosine.
Drug/Laboratory Test Interactions
Measurement of serum creatinine levels should be determined by the Jaffé reaction, since Ancobon does not interfere with the determination of creatinine values by this method. Most automated equipment for measurement of creatinine makes use of the Jaffé reaction.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility
Flucytosine has not undergone adequate animal testing to evaluate carcinogenic potential. The mutagenic potential of flucytosine was evaluated in Ames-type studies with five different mutants of S. typhimurium and no mutagenicity was detected in the presence or absence of activating enzymes. Flucytosine was nonmutagenic in three different repair assay systems (i.e., rec, uvr and pol).
There have been no adequate trials in animals on the effects of flucytosine on fertility or reproductive performance. The fertility and reproductive performance of the offspring (F1 generation) of mice treated with 100 mg/kg/day (345 mg/M2/day or 0.059 times the human dose), 200 mg/kg/day (690 mg/M2/day or 0.118 times the human dose) or 400 mg/kg/day (1380 mg/M2/day or 0.236 times the human dose) of flucytosine on days 7 to 13 of gestation was studied; the in utero treatment had no adverse effect on the fertility or reproductive performance of the offspring.
Teratogenic Effects. Pregnancy Category C
Flucytosine was shown to be teratogenic (vertebral fusions) in the rat at doses of 40 mg/kg/day (298 mg/M2/day or 0.051 times the human dose) administered on days 7 to 13 of gestation. At higher doses (700 mg/kg/day; 5208 mg/M2/day or 0.89 times the human dose administered on days 9 to 12 of gestation), cleft lip and palate and micrognathia were reported. Flucytosine was not teratogenic in rabbits up to a dose of 100 mg/kg/day (1423 mg/M2/day or 0.243 times the human dose) administered on days 6 to 18 of gestation. In mice, 400 mg/kg/day of flucytosine (1380 mg/M2/day or 0.236 times the human dose) administered on days 7 to 13 of gestation was associated with a low incidence of cleft palate that was not statistically significant. There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Ancobon should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.
It is not known whether this drug is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk and because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants from Ancobon, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or to discontinue the drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother.
The efficacy and safety of Ancobon have not been systematically studied in pediatric patients. A small number of neonates have been treated with 25 to 200 mg/kg/day of flucytosine, with and without the addition of amphotericin B, for systemic candidiasis. No unexpected adverse reactions were reported in these patients. It should be noted, however, that hypokalemia and acidemia were reported in one patient who received flucytosine in combination with amphotericin B, and anemia was observed in a second patient who received flucytosine alone. Transient thrombocytopenia was noted in two additional patients, one of whom also received amphotericin B.