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What is clofarabine?

Clofarabine (also called Clolar®) is an anticancer medicine. Clofarabine is a clear liquid given by vein (IV).

Clofarabine can pose a health hazard to caregivers. All caregivers should take safety precautions while giving this drug. For 48 hours after this drug is given, the patient’s body fluids can contain the drug. During that 48-hour period, caregivers should follow safety guidelines when handling the patient’s vomit, blood, urine, and bowel movements, including diapers. These guidelines include wearing gloves when cleaning up body fluids. For a complete list of safety precautions, see “Do you know… Protecting caregivers from drug hazards.”

Possible side effects of clofarabine

  • Fast heartbeat
  • Low blood counts
  • Low or high blood pressure
  • Edema (swelling)
  • Flushing
  • Headache
  • Fever and chills
  • Feeling tired, irritable or anxious
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Depression
  • Rash or itching
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach pain
  • Decreased appetite
  • Constipation
  • Mouth tissues bleeding, swelling, red, painful
  • Blood in the urine
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Increase in liver function tests
  • Nose bleed
  • Trouble breathing
  • Pain at injection site
  • Heart not working right
  • Tumor lysis syndrome

These are the most common side effects, but there may be others. Please report all side effects to the doctor or nurse.

In case of a severe side effect or reaction, call the doctor, nurse, or pharmacist at 595-3300. If you are outside the Memphis area, dial toll-free 1-866-2STJUDE (1-866-278-5833), and press 0 once the call is connected.

Special instructions for clofarabine

  • It may be easier for you to get infections after you receive clofarabine. Stay away from crowds and people with colds, flu, or other infections (See “Do you know… How to prevent infections”).
  • Clofarabine may cause nausea and vomiting. The doctor may prescribe medicine to keep you from feeling sick and throwing up after you receive clofarabine.
  • The staff will take blood samples regularly to test for changes in kidney or liver function and to check blood counts.


This document is not intended to take the place of the care and attention of your personal physician or other professional medical services. Our aim is to promote active participation in your care and treatment by providing information and education. Questions about individual health concerns or specific treatment options should be discussed with your physician.

St. Jude complies with health care-related federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

ATTENTION: If you speak another language, assistance services, free of charge, are available to you. Call 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

تنبيه: إذا كنت تتحدث باللغة العربية فيمكنك الاستعانة بخدمات المساعدة اللغوية المتوفرة لك مجانا. .يرجى الاتصال بالرقم. 5833-278-866-1  (الهاتف النصي: 1040-595-901-1).