Mycophenolate Mofetil (CellCept®)

Synonyms Mycophenolate Mofetil?

Mycophenolate mofetil (CellCept®) is sometimes referred to as RS or RS-61443. Most people use the brand name, CellCept®, to refer to the medication.

What Is Mycophenolate Mofetil?

Mycophenolate Mofetil or CellCept® medication is used in combination with other immunosuppressants to prevent organ rejection after transplantation, such as a liver transplant.

What Does Mycophenolate Mofetil Do?

CellCept® prevents rejection by suppressing the body's immune system.

Mycophenolate Mofetil Dosage

CellCept® is taken by mouth and is available in blue or brown 250- and 500-mg capsules. Most prescriptions call for it to be taken twice a day.

How to Properly Take Mycophenolate Mofetil

CellCept® can be taken with or without food. Swallow the capsules whole; do not break, crush, chew, or open capsules before swallowing (see the precautions cited later on this page).

Missed Doses

If you miss a dose CellCept® dosage, contact your child's coordinator for advice. If fewer than three hours have passed since the missed dose, take the dose and get back on schedule. Call your transplant coordinator if more than three hours have passed since the missed dose. Taking doses too close together can be dangerous and produce toxic effects.

Mycophenolate Mofetil Side Effects

Common CellCept® side effects include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Stomach pain
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
  • Constipation, gas
  • Weakness
  • Shakiness
  • Muscle or leg pain
  • Dizziness, drowsiness, headache
  • Tremors, sweating, flushing
  • Insomnia, mood changes
  • Vision changes
  • Decrease in white blood cells
  • Decrease in platelets

Rare side effects of CellCept® include:

  • Skin rash, itching
  • Fever, chills
  • Sore throat
  • Swelling
  • change in urination
  • Frequent urination
  • Severe vomiting
  • Blood in urine, stool, or vomit
  • Bruising
  • Swollen glands
  • Chest pain
  • Difficult breathing

If any of these side effects continues or becomes bothersome, inform your doctor or coordinator. Be sure to alert your coordinator if diarrhea continues for more than 24 hours or is bloody. Also, report unexplained vomiting that lasts for more than 24 hours to your coordinator.

Mycophenolate Mofetil Drug Interactions

Many medications may cause changes in absorption. Alert your coordinator of any medication changes made by other doctors – especially medicines such as acyclovir, antacids with aluminum or magnesium, and oral contraceptives. Tell your doctor or pharmacist about any other prescription or over-the-counter medication you are taking, so you can be warned of interactions and prevent them.

Mycophenolate Mofetil Storage

Store CellCept® at room temperature.

Precautions for Children

Take CellCept® exactly as prescribed, at the same times each day. Never stop this medication unless advised to do so by a transplant surgeon or your transplant coordinator.

Do not open or crush CellCept® capsules. If the capsule should come apart, avoid inhaling the powder or touching it with bare skin. If contact occurs, wash thoroughly with soap and water; rinse eyes with plain water.

We recommend that patients taking CellCept® wear a medical alert bracelet or pendant (such as jewelry marketed under the name Medic Alert) that says "Taking immunosuppressant."

Mycophenolate Mofetil Availability

Many pharmacies do not stock CellCept®. Call your pharmacist at least five working days before you need to fill a prescription to make sure the medication will be available.

Learn more about other Intestine Transplant Drugs.