Management Of Other Toxicities

Although nonhematologic adverse events are relatively common with imatinib, these are frequently mild, and can be managed easily. Grade 3 or higher adverse events are seen seldomly, and only 2-3% of the patients require permanent discontinuation of therapy because of toxicity. A guideline for the management of the most common adverse events is presented in Table 18.2. Early intervention is important to help avoid more significant problems and unnecessary treatment interruptions and dose reductions. There has been some concern regarding the possibility of late adverse events with prolonged therapy with imatinib in view of its inhibition of c-kit and platelet derived growth factor receptor (PDGFR). However, to date, there is no evidence of any unexpected late complications.

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