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What is Keytruda (pembrolizumab)?
Keytruda (pembrolizumab) is a medication used for the treatment of advanced melanoma, metastatic nonsquamous NSCLC, recurrent or metastatic Head and Neck Squamous Cell Carcinoma (HNSCC), recurrent classical Hodgkin Lymphoma (cHL), locally advanced or metastatic urothelial carcinoma, solid tumours having the biomarkers MSI-H or dMMR, recurrent locally advanced or metastatic gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma, renal cell carcinoma, triple-negative breast cancer.
Indications of Usage
KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab) is indicated for the treatment of patients with unresectable or metastatic melanoma and disease progression following ipilimumab and, if BRAF V600 mutation positive, a BRAF inhibitor.
How does Keytruda (pembrolizumab) work?
Keytruda (pembrolizumab) is a monoclonal antibody, a type of protein that has been designed to recognise and attach to a specific structure (called an antigen) that is found in certain cells in the body.
Keytruda (pembrolizumab) has been designed to attach to and block a receptor called ‘programmed cell death-1’ (PD-1), which switches off the activity of certain cells of the immune system (the body’s natural defences) called T cells. By blocking PD-1, pembrolizumab prevents PD-1 from switching off these immune cells, thereby increasing the ability of the immune system to kill cancer cells.
How is Keytruda (pembrolizumab) taken?
The standard dosage is:
- Melanoma: 200 mg every 3 weeks
- NSCLC: 200 mg every 3 weeks
- HNSCC: 200 mg every 3 weeks
- cHL: 200 mg every 3 weeks for adults and 2 mg/kg (up to 200mg) every 3 weeks for pediatrics
- Urothelial Carcinoma: 200 mg every 3 weeks
- MSI-H Cancer: 200 mg every 3 weeks for adults and 2 mg/kg (up to 200 mg) every 3 weeks for children
- Gastric Cancer: 200 mg every 3 weeks.
Administer as an intravenous infusion over 30 minutes.
For children with cHL and MSI-H, how much Keytruda (pembrolizumab) is needed depends on the body weight.
Complete information about Keytruda (pembrolizumab) dose and administration can be found in the official prescribing information listed in our references section[1,2,3].
Note: Please consult with your treating doctor for personalized dosing.
Keytruda (pembrolizumab) FAQs
How does this medication work?
Keytruda is a type of immunotherapy that works by blocking the PD-1 pathway and to help prevent cancer cells from hiding. Keytruda helps the immune system to detect and fight cancer.
In what strengths is it available?
It is available in 100mg/4ml solution in a single dose vial.
Is keytruda an immunotherapy?
Keytruda is an immunotherapy medicine that may treat certain cancers by working with your immune system. Immunotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that uses your own immune system to help detect and fight cancer.
What are the signs that show keytruda is working?
It is measured by a shrinking or stable tumor. During and after treatment, the patient will have a regular checkup with his or her physician.
How will I receive keytruda?
Your doctor will give you an injection into your vein. It is given every 3 weeks. Your doctor will decide how many treatments you need.
100mg/4mg – 1 Vial
Anton P. –
Full remission after 3 rounds of chemo 3 rounds of keytruda stage 4 lung squamous cell 60% PD-L1.
Gideon T –
After a radical cystectomy and two additional surgeries for recurrences of bladder cancer I started Keytruda infusions 2 1/2 years ago, treatment #44 coming up. Slight adjustment required in thyroid med, and mild skin rashes and mouth sores were the only side effects for me. Keytruda has been a godsend for me, but I see others have had very serious problems. Hopefully with more research there will be a way to screen patients who will be treated successfully with the drug.
Kim T. –
It does effect your memory. Thyroid proplems both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. I never knew about thyroid before. I am thankful every day and l will be taking round 41 next week. FYI: uterine carsino sarcoma that spread to lungs.