What Is Acute GVHD?


Learning about acute GVHD

Learn about acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), when it usually occurs, what areas of the body it can affect, and how Healthcare Professionals may treat acute GVHD.

Video Transcript

Onscreen text and narrator: What Is Acute GVHD?

Onscreen text and narrator: Jakafi® (ruxolitinib) is the first and only prescription medicine approved by the FDA to treat adults and children 12 years of age and older with acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) who have taken corticosteroids and they did not work well enough.

Important Safety Information is discussed later in this video.

Onscreen text and narrator: This video is intended for informational use only and is not medical advice. Your Healthcare Professional is the best source for treatment-related questions and medical advice.

Sandy: Hi. I'm Sandy Allen-Bard, an oncology clinical nurse educator for Incyte. For more than 20 years prior to joining Incyte, I worked with patients who had cancer as well as patients who had stem cell transplants, including those who experienced acute graft-versus-host disease or acute GVHD.

Sandy: Acute GVHD is a serious complication that affects people who had a stem cell or bone marrow transplant using cells from another person.

Sandy: In Figure A, the patient is receiving a transplant using cells from another person, referred to as donor cells. In Figure B, those healthy immune cells from the donor—now inside the patient—recognize the patient’s body as foreign and begin attacking it.

Sandy: The medical term for the patient is the “host,” while the transplanted cells they’ve received are called the "graft."

Sandy: That's why the condition is called "graft-versus-host disease," or GVHD for short.

Sandy: Acute GVHD mainly affects the skin, liver, and gastrointestinal—or GI—tract. Your GI tract (also known as your digestive tract) includes your stomach, intestines, and colon.

Sandy: Patients may experience symptoms or other health problems in any of these organs because of acute GVHD.

Sandy: Acute GVHD usually happens within the first 3 months after transplant, but it can sometimes start or return 3 or more months after transplant.

Sandy: If acute GVHD does occur, treatment usually begins with medicines to suppress the patient’s immune system.

Sandy: Steroids (also known as corticosteroids) are the standard treatment for patients with newly diagnosed acute GVHD.

Sandy: Although steroid treatment is successful for some patients, others do not respond initially or do not fully respond.

Onscreen text: Not all patients respond initially or do not fully respond to steroid treatment. This is known as steroid-refractory acute GVHD.

Sandy: When patients don’t respond well enough to steroids—either because they didn’t have the desired effect or because they required high doses that could not be reduced—they are said to have steroid-refractory acute GVHD.

Sandy: When steroids don’t work well enough, a different type of therapy may be given.

Sandy: If you or a loved one has acute GVHD and it has not responded to therapy with steroids, ask your Transplant Team about Jakafi® (ruxolitinib).

Onscreen text: Your treatment journey depends on your individual circumstances and the decisions you make with your Transplant Team. Results may vary.

Sandy: Talk to your Transplant Team to discover if Jakafi may be an option for you.

Sandy: Now let's review the Important Safety Information for Jakafi.

Onscreen text and narrator: Important Safety Information

Jakafi can cause serious side effects, including:

Low blood counts: Jakafi® (ruxolitinib) may cause your platelet, red blood cell, or white blood cell counts to be lowered. If you develop bleeding, stop taking Jakafi and call your healthcare provider. Your healthcare provider will perform blood tests to check your blood counts before you start Jakafi and regularly during your treatment. Your healthcare provider may change your dose of Jakafi or stop your treatment based on the results of your blood tests. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you develop or have worsening symptoms such as unusual bleeding, bruising, tiredness, shortness of breath, or a fever.

Infection: You may be at risk for developing a serious infection during treatment with Jakafi. Tell your healthcare provider if you develop any of the following symptoms of infection: chills, nausea, vomiting, aches, weakness, fever, painful skin rash or blisters.

Skin cancers: Some people who take Jakafi have developed certain types of non-melanoma skin cancers. Tell your healthcare provider if you develop any new or changing skin lesions.

Increases in cholesterol: You may have changes in your blood cholesterol levels. Your healthcare provider will do blood tests to check your cholesterol levels during your treatment with Jakafi.

The most common side effects of Jakafi include: for certain types of MF and PV – low platelet or red blood cell counts, bruising, dizziness, headache, and diarrhea; and for acute GVHD – low platelet, red or white blood cell counts, infections, and fluid retention.

These are not all the possible side effects of Jakafi. Ask your pharmacist or healthcare provider for more information. Tell your healthcare provider about any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Before taking Jakafi, tell your healthcare provider about: all the medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements you are taking and all your medical conditions, including if you have an infection, have or had tuberculosis (TB) or have been in close contact with someone who has TB, have or had hepatitis B, have or had liver or kidney problems, are on dialysis, have high cholesterol or triglycerides, had skin cancer, or have any other medical condition. Take Jakafi exactly as your healthcare provider tells you. Do not change your dose or stop taking Jakafi without first talking to your healthcare provider.

Women should not take Jakafi while pregnant or planning to become pregnant. Do not breastfeed during treatment with Jakafi and for 2 weeks after the final dose.

Please see the Full Prescribing Information, which includes a more complete discussion of the risks associated with Jakafi.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

You may also report side effects to Incyte Medical Information at 1-855-463-3463.

Sandy: Visit jakafi.com to learn more about the possible risks and benefits of Jakafi for the treatment of acute GVHD for patients who have already taken corticosteroids and they did not work well enough.

Onscreen text: Please visit Jakafi.com to learn more.

This video is sponsored by Incyte Corporation.
Jakafi and the Jakafi logo are registered trademarks of Incyte.
© 2020, Incyte Corporation. MAT-JAK-00500  03/20

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INDICATIONS AND USAGE

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

Jakafi is a prescription medicine used to treat adults with polycythemia vera who have already taken a medicine called hydroxyurea and it did not work well enough or they could not tolerate it.

Jakafi is used to treat adults with certain types of myelofibrosis.

Jakafi is also used to treat adults and children 12 years of age and older with acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) who have taken corticosteroids and they did not work well enough.

Important Safety Information

Jakafi can cause serious side effects, including:

Low blood counts: Jakafi® (ruxolitinib) may cause your platelet, red blood cell, or white blood cell counts to be lowered. If you develop bleeding, stop taking Jakafi and call your healthcare provider. Your healthcare provider will perform blood tests to check your blood counts before you start Jakafi and regularly during your treatment. Your healthcare provider may change your dose of Jakafi or stop your treatment based on the results of your blood tests. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you develop or have worsening symptoms such as unusual bleeding, bruising, tiredness, shortness of breath, or a fever.

Infection: You may be at risk for developing a serious infection during treatment with Jakafi. Tell your healthcare provider if you develop any of the following symptoms of infection: chills, nausea, vomiting, aches, weakness, fever, painful skin rash or blisters.

Skin cancers: Some people who take Jakafi have developed certain types of non-melanoma skin cancers. Tell your healthcare provider if you develop any new or changing skin lesions.

Increases in cholesterol: You may have changes in your blood cholesterol levels. Your healthcare provider will do blood tests to check your cholesterol levels during your treatment with Jakafi.

The most common side effects of Jakafi include: for certain types of MF and PV – low platelet or red blood cell counts, bruising, dizziness, headache, and diarrhea; and for acute GVHD – low platelet, red or white blood cell counts, infections, and fluid retention.

These are not all the possible side effects of Jakafi. Ask your pharmacist or healthcare provider for more information. Tell your healthcare provider about any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Before taking Jakafi, tell your healthcare provider about: all the medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements you are taking and all your medical conditions, including if you have an infection, have or had tuberculosis (TB) or have been in close contact with someone who has TB, have or had hepatitis B, have or had liver or kidney problems, are on dialysis, have high cholesterol or triglycerides, had skin cancer, or have any other medical condition. Take Jakafi exactly as your healthcare provider tells you. Do not change your dose or stop taking Jakafi without first talking to your healthcare provider.

Women should not take Jakafi while pregnant or planning to become pregnant. Do not breastfeed during treatment with Jakafi and for 2 weeks after the final dose.

Please see the Full Prescribing Information, which includes a more complete discussion of the risks associated with Jakafi.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

You may also report side effects to Incyte Medical Information at 1-855-463-3463.