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Bavencio® (avelumab) for Advanced Kidney Cancer

Bavencio is a medication used in combination with Inlyta (axitinib) to treat advanced kidney cancer in adults 

Bavencio is a medicine that works with your immune system. Bavencio can cause your immune system to attack normal organs and tissues and can affect the way the work. These problems can sometimes become serious or life-threatening and can lead to death. 

Dosage:   10mg/kg
Route of Administration:  Intravenous infusion
Schedule:   Every 2 weeks
Dietary restrictions:  None

I should tell my healthcare provider if I: 

  • have immune system problems such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • have had an organ transplant
  • have lung or breathing problems
  • have liver or kidney problems
  • have diabetes
  • have heart problems or high blood pressure
  • have a high cholesterol level in your blood

For women; tell your doctor if you:

  • are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.  Bavencio can harm your unborn baby. If you are able to become pregnant, you should use an effective method of birth control during your treatment and for at least 1 month after the last dose of Bavencio.
  • are breast-feeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if Bavencio passes into the breast milk. Do not breastfeed during treatment and for at least 1 month after the last dose of Bavencio.

Tell your healthcare provider at each visit about all the medications you take including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. 

Know the medicines you take.  Keep a current list of them to show your doctors and pharmacist whenever you get a new medication.

What are the possible side effects of Bavencio when given in combination with Inlyta?

Common Side effects include:

  • diarrhea
  • feeling tired
  • high blood pressure
  • muscle and bone pain
  • nausea
  • mouth sores
  • liver problems
  • blisters or rash on the palms of your hands and soles of your feet
  • hoarseness
  • decreased appetite
  • low levels of thyroid hormone
  • rash
  • shortness of breath
  • cough
  • stomach area (abdomen) pain
  • headache

These are not all of the possible side effects of Bavencio. Talk to your health care team for more information or advice about side effects. 

BavencioTM may cause serious side effects. A serious side effect is a side effect that can sometimes become life-threatening. They can happen anytime during treatment or even after your treatment has ended.  

Call or see your healthcare provider right away if you get any symptoms of the following problems or these symptoms get worse:

Serious side effects may include:

  • Infusion reaction (hypersensitivity reaction):  fever, shaking chills, rash, itching, skin flushing, feeling dizzy or faint, trouble breathing
  • Lung problems (pneumonitis): cough, chest pain, shortness of breath.
  • Intestinal problems (colitis): diarrhea, blood or mucus in your stools, severe stomach (abdominal) pain, weight loss
  • Hormone gland problems (especially adrenal glands, thyroid, and pancreas): rapid heartbeat, increased sweating, extreme tiredness, weight gain or loss, feeling more hungry or thirsty than usual, hair loss, changes in mood or behavior, such as irritability or forgetfulness, constipation, deeper voice, very low blood pressure, urinating more often than usual, dizziness or fainting, nausea or vomiting, stomach area (abdomen) pain, feeling cold.
  • Kidney problems: decrease in amount of urine, blood in your urine, swelling in ankles, loss of appetite.
  • Problems in other organs: severe muscle weakness, severe or persistent muscle or joint pains, chest pain and tightness, trouble breathing, skin rash, blisters or peeling, changes in heartbeat, such as beating fast, or seeming to skip a beat, or pounding sensation, tiredness or sleepiness, swelling of the feet and legs, dizziness or fainting, fever or flu-like symptoms, changes in eyesight.
  • Heart problems: When Bavencio is taken in combination with axitinib, severe heart problems can happen and can lead to death. Signs and symptoms of heart problems may include: swelling of your stomach-area, legs, hand, feet, or ankles, shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting, chest discomfort, including pain or pressure; weight gain, pain or discomfort in your arms, back, neck, or jaw, breaking out in a cold sweat, feeling lightheaded or dizzy.

Call your doctor right away if you get:

  • bleeding from the rectum or vomit blood
  • chest pain
  • shortness of breath
  • severe headache 
  • loss of vision
  • confusion
  • difficulty with word finding or speaking
  • loss of balance

 General information about Bavencio: This patient Information sheet summarizes the most important information about Bavencio. If you would like more information, talk with your healthcare team. You can ask your doctor for information about Bavencio that is written for healthcare professionals.  

Patient Assistance Program:  CoverOne

Resources:  Pfizer, Inc. 1-866-422-2377  

Web address:

Adapted from the Bavencio package insert.  EMD Serono, Inc. and Pfizer, Inc. May 2019

KCA disclaimer statement:  you should rely primarily upon your doctor for medical information.