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Alimta (Pemetrexed Disodium)

Alimta (Pemetrexed Disodium)

Pemetrexed Disodium (Alimta) | Plural Mesothelioma Treatment | RMQ

What is Alimta and how is it used?

Alimta is a prescription medicine used to treat the symptoms of Mesothelioma and Nonsquamous Non-Small cell Lung Carcinoma. Alimta may be used alone or with other medications.

Alimta belongs to a class of drugs called Antineoplastics, Antimetabolite.

It is not known if Alimta is safe and effective in children.

What are the possible side effects of Alimta?

Alimta may cause serious side effects including:

  • hives,
  • difficulty breathing,
  • swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat,
  • little or no urination,
  • new or worsening cough,
  • fever,
  • trouble breathing,
  • swelling, redness, or blistering of skin that was treated with  radiation in the past,
  • chills,
  • tiredness,
  • mouth sores,
  • skin sores,
  • easy bruising,
  • unusual bleeding,
  • pale skin,
  • cold hands and feet,
  • shortness of breath, and
  • lightheadedness

Get medical help right away, if you have any of the symptoms listed above.

The most common side effects of Alimta include:

  • tiredness,
  • shortness of breath,
  • loss of appetite,
  • weight loss,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • diarrhea, and
  • constipation

Tell the doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

These are not all the possible side effects of Alimta. For more information, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Pemetrexed for injection is a folate analog metabolic inhibitor. The drug substance, pemetrexed disodium heptahydrate, has the chemical name L-glutamic acid, N-[4-[2-(2-amino-4,7-dihydro-4-oxo-1H-pyrrolo[2,3-d]pyrimidin-5yl)ethyl]benzoyl]-, disodium salt, heptahydrate with a molecular formula of C20H19N5Na2O6•7H2O and a molecular weight of 597.49. The structural formula is as follows:

ALIMTA (pemetrexed)  Structural Formula Illustration

ALIMTA is a sterile white-to-light yellow or green-yellow lyophilized powder in single-dose vials to be reconstituted for intravenous infusion. Each 100-mg vial of ALIMTA contains 100 mg pemetrexed (equivalent to 139.8 mg pemetrexed disodium heptahydrate) and 106 mg mannitol. Each 500-mg vial of ALIMTA contains 500 mg pemetrexed (equivalent to 699 mg pemetrexed disodium heptahydrate) and 500 mg mannitol. Hydrochloric acid and/or sodium hydroxide may have been added to adjust pH.


Non-Squamous Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC)

ALIMTA® is indicated:

  • in combination with pembrolizumab and platinum chemotherapy, for the initial treatment of patients with metastatic non-squamous NSCLC, with no EGFR or ALK genomic tumor aberrations.
  • in combination with cisplatin for the initial treatment of patients with locally advanced or metastatic, nonsquamous, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
  • as a single agent for the maintenance treatment of patients with locally advanced or metastatic, nonsquamous NSCLC whose disease has not progressed after four cycles of platinum-based first-line chemotherapy.
  • as a single agent for the treatment of patients with recurrent, metastatic non-squamous, NSCLC after prior chemotherapy.

Limitations Of Use

ALIMTA is not indicated for the treatment of patients with squamous cell, non-small cell lung cancer .


ALIMTA is indicated, in combination with cisplatin, for the initial treatment of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma whose disease is unresectable or who are otherwise not candidates for curative surgery.



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