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Dasatinib (Sprycel) is a cancer medication used to slow the cancer growth and stop potential metastasis. It is used to treat some forms of leukemia, such as CML (chronic myeloid leukemia), ALL (acute lymphoblastic leukemia) if all the other cancer treatments weren’t effective. Sometimes dasatinib is used to treat metastatic melanoma.

Reported side effects of dasatinib includes fever, tiredness, abdominal and other kinds of pain. It is possible to experience discomfort, high temperature or edema, asthenia, dizziness, weight loss or weigh gain, abdominal distension and some chest pain.

The most common side effects connected to the use of dasatinib are hematological problems. More than 70% of the patients report neutropenia, thrombocytopenia, pancytopenia and anemia. Bleeding, coaglulopathy and aplasia of red blood cells are rare. Use of dasatinib might lead to increased risk of infection in general.

Diarrhea is present in 50% of patients on dasatinib, as well as dyspepsia, dysphagia, gastritis and colitis. Nausea, vomiting, intestinal bleeding, constipation and some other gastrointestinal problems are less frequent.

1/3 of all dasatinib patients suffer from shortness of breath and cough, asthma and pneumonitis. Less often, patients report respiratory infection, pneumonia or pulmonary edema, and sometimes bronchospasm and acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Psychiatric side effects are common, such as insomnia, anxiety or depression, confusion and sometimes weakened libido. Possible effects on the nervous systems are also headaches, sleepiness, syncope, dysgeusia (changed sense of taste), tremor and convulsions. Sometimes dasatinib may affect the brain causing amnesia, neuropathy, bleeding in the brain, cerebrovascular condition ischemic attack or leukoencelopathy.

The medication affects the cardiovascular system, causing arrhythmia, changes in blood pressure, flushing and palpitations, angina pectoris, cardiomegaly, myocarditis, pericarditis, infarction, congestive heart failure and many other heartproblems.

Pain in the muscles and joints, inflammation, stiffness and weakness of the muscles are frequently connected to the use of dasatinib. Cases of rhabdomyolysis are rare.

Skin rash is very common, in many different forms, and patients have reported dry skin, hair loss, acne, urticaria and dermatitis. Some other dermatological issues are rare, as well as allergic reactions.

Dasatinib affect the metabolism of phosphates and calcium, causing their blood levels to drop. Levels of liver enzymes (ALT, AST, transaminase) and bilirubin are increased in some of the patients. The medication may affect the kidneys, causing increase of creatinine or renal failure.

Use of dasatinib may provoke gynecomastia, or affect the menstruation.

Dasatinib often affects the eyes, causing visual problems, conjunctivitis or dry eyes.

Although dasatinib is an anti cancer drug, it does have certain tumor potential, and there have been cases of tumor lysis syndrome.

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