The FDA issued a warning regarding the safety of leukemia drug Sprycel. Sprycel is indicated for treating certain adults suffering from Philadelphia chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) or acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). The drug, which has treated approximately 32,882 patients since launch, blocks the action of an abnormal protein that causes tumor growth.
The US regulatory body stated that treatment with the drug may elevate the risk of high blood pressure in the lungs’ arteries. The disorder is referred to as pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). The FDA stated that due to high blood pressure the heart has to work harder to pump sufficient blood through the lungs. Consequently, the heart muscles stand the risk of becoming weak which may cause them to loose the ability to perform the above function. Breathlessness, fatigue and swelling of body parts (such as the ankles and legs) are the common symptoms associated with PAH.