Skip to main content




What is rasburicase?

Rasburicase (also called Elitek® or urate oxidase) is a medicine used to lower uric acid in the blood. Patients receiving anticancer therapy that results in tumor lysis (tumor breakdown) sometimes require rasburicase. Increased levels of uric acid in the blood can result in kidney stones and kidney damage. Rasburicase is available as a clear liquid given by vein (IV).

Possible side effects of rasburicase

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Pain in abdomen
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash
  • Severe allergic reaction with these symptoms: chest pain, low blood pressure, feeling short of breath, and hives.

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 rasburicase

  • Before starting rasburicase, you will be tested for a medical condition known as G-6-PD deficiency. This mostly affects people of African or Mediterranean decent. Rasburicase should not be used in patients with G-6-PD deficiency.
  • Rasburicase is given one time a day during at least a 30-minute time period.
  • To check for signs of an allergic reaction, a nurse will observe you and check blood pressure levels often while giving the rasburicase. An allergic reaction can occur with any dose of rasburicase not just the first.
  • While receiving rasburicase, tell the nurse right away if you are having any of these symptoms of an allergic reaction:
    • chest pain
    • feeling short of breath
    • skin rash (hives)

If so, the nurse will stop giving the rasburicase right away. Medicines will be given to help stop the reaction. You will not receive rasburicase again.


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).