We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Azacitidine?

By Debra Durkee
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Azacitidine is a medication prescribed to individuals who have been diagnosed with some types of cancer. Particularly effective against cancers of the bone marrow, the drug acts to slow the spread of the disease. It is generally administered as an injection in a clinical setting.

A group of cancers known as myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are those that are treated by azacitidine. These are cancers of the blood, which generally begin in an individual's bone marrow. The bone marrow is the portion of the body that is responsible for making new blood cells, and when this system is compromised, there are either too few blood cells or abnormal cells present in the body. There are five types of MDS, and azacitidine can be used in the treatment of all five.

The medication acts in two ways. It helps create balance within the bone marrow and aids in the production of normal blood cells. Secondly, it attacks and destroys abnormal blood cells before they can be released into the blood stream. These types of medications are known as demethylation agents.

In most cases, azacitidine is injected daily for one week. After one month, the week-long cycle can be started again. Treatment can be continued as long as it is needed and is generally administered by a medical professional in a hospital or clinical setting.

Many individuals experience mild side effects from the administration of the drug, including redness, swelling, bruising or aching where the needle is injected. Side effects such as nausea and vomiting are common, and can be managed with the administration of other medications before the treatment. Headaches, joint pain and a loss of appetite are also common.

More serious side effects may result in treatment being discontinued or dosing being changed. These include difficulty breathing; gastrointestinal distress that cannot be managed with other medications or that does not go away; flu-like symptoms, such as fever and body aches; and sudden, extreme weight gain. Azacitidine may also cause abnormalities in the blood, such as gums that bleed, blood blisters under the skin, nosebleeds, and easy bruising.

Azacitidine may interfere with some pre-existing conditions that can also make side effects worse. Patients with liver disease, renal failure or kidney failure are typically not given the drug because of possible interactions with drugs used to treat these conditions. Women who are pregnant are generally not administered the drug either because of danger to the unborn baby.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.