Keytruda (Pembrolizumab) is a new treatment for treating a particular form of lung cancer known as non-small cell lung cancer and for a type of skin cancer called melanoma.
Keytruda (Pembrolizumab) can be used to treat lung cancer when:
- the cancer has spread AND;
- it tests positive for PD-L1 AND;
- when chemotherapy containing platinum has not worked AND;
- if the tumor has “EGFR” or “ALK” gene and you have tried an EGFR or ALK inhibitor medicine
Keytruda (Pembrolizumab) can be used to treat melanoma when:
- the melanoma has spread and cannot be surgically removed AND;
- treatment with ipilimumab has not been successful AND;
- if the tumor has an abnormal “BRAF” gene and you have tried a BRAF inhibitor medicine
More serious side effects can occur if the immune systems begins attacking other organs. Tell your doctor if you notice:
- chest pain
- frequent bowel movements
- stools that are black, tarry, sticky, or have blood or mucus
- stomach pain or tenderness
- yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes (jaundice)
- bleeding or bruising more easily that usual
- rapid or erratic heartbeat
- weight loss or weight gain
- increased sweat rate
- increased thirst
- frequent urination
- change in urine color
- changes or problems with eyesight
- severe or persistent muscle or joint pain
- signs of fever (chills, shaking, dizziness)
Before starting treatment with Keytruda, be sure your doctor is aware of any immune system problems you have including Crohn`s disease, ulcerative colitis or lupus.
If you have had an organ transplant, make sure your doctor knows this.
Keytruda (Pembrolizumab) can harm an unborn baby. Make sure to be using contraception when taking Keytruda. It is not known if Keytruda is passed from a nursing mother through breast milk.