8 USE IN SPECIFIC POPULATIONS Lactation: Advise women to stop breastfeeding while taking SIKLOS. 8.1 Pregnancy Risk Summary SIKLOS can cause fetal harm based on findings from animal studies and the drug's mechanism of action [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.1)]. There are no studies with the use of SIKLOS in pregnant women, and limited available data on SIKLOS use during pregnancy are insufficient to inform drug-associated risks. Drugs which affect DNA synthesis, such as hydroxyurea, may be potential mutagenic agents. In animal reproduction studies, administration of hydroxyurea to pregnant rats and rabbits during organogenesis produced embryotoxic and teratogenic effects at doses 0.8 times and 0.3 times, respectively, the maximum recommended human daily dose on a mg/m² basis. In rats and rabbits, fetal malformations were observed with partially ossified cranial bones, absence of eye sockets, hydrocephaly, bipartite sternebrae, and missing lumbar vertebrae. Embryotoxicity was characterized by decreased fetal viability, reduced live litter sizes, and developmental delays (see Data). Advise pregnant women of the potential risk to a fetus (see Clinical Considerations). Background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population are unknown. All pregnancies have a background risk of birth defect, loss, or other adverse outcomes. In the U.S. general population, the estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage in clinically recognized pregnancies is 2%–4% and 15%–20%, respectively. Clinical Considerations Fetal/Neonatal adverse reactions Although the data on a limited number of exposed pregnancies indicate no adverse effects on pregnancy or on the health of the fetus/newborn, patients on SIKLOS should be made aware of the potential risks to the fetus. Based on the limited amount of available information, in case of an exposure to SIKLOS of pregnant female patients or pregnant partners of male patients, treated by SIKLOS, a careful follow-up with adequate clinical, biological and ultrasonographic examinations should be considered. Data Human Data According to a retrospective analysis of a cohort of 123 adult patients treated with hydroxyurea, twenty-three pregnancies have been reported from 15 women treated with hydroxyurea and partners of 3 men not using barrier contraception treated with hydroxyurea. Most (61%) had no adverse developmental outcomes. In the other cases with known evolution, pregnancy had been interrupted either voluntarily or upon medical advice. In retrospective cohorts of 352 children and adolescents with sickle cell disease older than 2 years treated with hydroxyurea for a period of up to 12 years, 3 pregnancies under hydroxyurea were reported with no adverse developmental outcomes. From post-marketing data of SIKLOS, 3 pregnancies have been reported while the father was treated with SIKLOS and 16 pregnancies have been reported in 15 females treated with SIKLOS. Among the 13 cases with known evolution, 5 pregnancies had no adverse developmental outcomes, 4 led to premature birth, and 4 were early terminated. Animal Data Hydroxyurea has been demonstrated to be a potent teratogen in a wide variety of animal models, including mice, hamsters, cats, miniature swine, dogs, and monkeys at doses within 1-fold of the human dose given on a mg/m2 basis. Hydroxyurea is embryotoxic and causes fetal malformations (partially ossified cranial bones, absence of eye sockets, hydrocephaly, bipartite sternebrae, missing lumbar vertebrae) at 180 mg/kg/day (about 0.8 times the maximum recommended human daily dose on a mg/m2 basis) in rats and at 30 mg/kg/day (about 0.3 times the maximum recommended human daily dose on a mg/m2 basis) in rabbits. Embryotoxicity was characterized by decreased fetal viability, reduced live litter sizes, and developmental delays. Hydroxyurea crosses the placenta. Single doses of ≥375 mg/kg (about 1.7 times the maximum recommended human daily dose on a mg/m2 basis) to rats caused growth retardation and impaired learning ability. 8.2 Lactation Risk Summary It is not known whether SIKLOS is excreted in human milk, the effects of SIKLOS on the breastfed child, or the effects of SIKLOS on milk production. Because of the potential for serious adverse reactions in a breastfed child from SIKLOS, including carcinogenicity, advise patients not to breastfeed during treatment with SIKLOS. 8.3 Females and Males of Reproductive Potential Pregnancy Testing SIKLOS can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman [see Use in Specific Populations (8.1)]. Verify the pregnancy status of females of reproductive potential prior to initiating SIKLOS therapy. Contraception Females Advise females of reproductive potential to use effective contraception during and after treatment with SIKLOS for at least 6 months after therapy. Advise females to immediately report pregnancy. Males SIKLOS may damage spermatozoa and testicular tissue, resulting in possible genetic abnormalities. Males with female sexual partners of reproductive potential should use effective contraception during and after treatment with SIKLOS for at least 6 months after therapy [see Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)]. Infertility Males Based on findings in animals and humans, male fertility may be compromised by treatment with SIKLOS. Azoospermia or oligospermia, sometimes reversible, has been observed in men. Before the start of therapy, inform male patients about the possibility of sperm conservation [see Adverse Reactions (6) and Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)]. 8.4 Pediatric Use The safety and effectiveness of SIKLOS have been established in pediatric patients aged 2-18 years with sickle cell anemia with recurrent moderate to severe painful crises. Use of SIKLOS in these age groups is supported by evidence from a non-interventional cohort study, the European Sickle Cell Disease prospective Cohort study, ESCORT-HU, in which 405 pediatric patients ages 2 to <18 were enrolled. Among the 405 pediatric patients treated with SIKLOS, 274 were children (2-11) and 108 were adolescents (12-16) [see Clinical Studies (14)]. Continuous follow-up of the growth of treated children is recommended. Pediatric patients aged 2-16 years had a higher risk of neutropenia than patients more than 16 years old. The safety and effectiveness of SIKLOS have not been established in pediatric patients less than 2 years of age. 8.6 Renal Impairment The exposure to SIKLOS is higher in patients with creatinine clearance of less than 60 mL/min. Reduce dosage and closely monitor the hematologic parameters when SIKLOS is to be administered to these patients [see Dosage and Administration (2.2) and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)]. 8.7 Hepatic impairment Close monitoring of hematologic parameters is advised in patients with hepatic impairment receiving SIKLOS.