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RAPAMUNE® (sirolimus) Use in Specific Populations


8.1 Pregnancy

Risk Summary

Based on animal studies and the mechanism of action, Rapamune can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman [see Data, Clinical Pharmacology (12.1)]. There are limited data on the use of sirolimus during pregnancy; however, these data are insufficient to inform a drug-associated risk of adverse developmental outcomes. In animal studies, sirolimus was embryo/fetotoxic in rats at sub-therapeutic doses [see Data]. Advise pregnant women of the potential risk to a fetus.

The estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population is unknown. 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.


Animal Data

Sirolimus crossed the placenta and was toxic to the conceptus.

In rat embryo-fetal development studies, pregnant rats were administered sirolimus orally during the period of organogenesis (Gestational Day 6–15). Sirolimus produced embryo-fetal lethality at 0.5 mg/kg (2.5-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg, on a body surface area basis) and reduced fetal weight at 1 mg/kg (5-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg). The no observed adverse effect level (NOAEL) for fetal toxicity in rats was 0.1 mg/kg (0.5-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg). Maternal toxicity (weight loss) was observed at 2 mg/kg (10-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg). The NOAEL for maternal toxicity was 1 mg/kg. In combination with cyclosporine, rats had increased embryo-fetal mortality compared with sirolimus alone.

In rabbit embryo-fetal development studies, pregnant rabbits were administered sirolimus orally during the period of organogenesis (Gestational Day 6–18). There were no effects on embryo-fetal development at doses up to 0.05 mg/kg (0.5-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg, on a body surface area basis); however, at doses of 0.05 mg/kg and above, the ability to sustain a successful pregnancy was impaired (i.e., embryo-fetal abortion or early resorption). Maternal toxicity (decreased body weight) was observed at 0.05 mg/kg. The NOAEL for maternal toxicity was 0.025 mg/kg (0.25-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg).

In a pre- and post-natal development study in rats, pregnant females were dosed during gestation and lactation (Gestational Day 6 through Lactation Day 20). An increased incidence of dead pups, resulting in reduced live litter size, occurred at 0.5 mg/kg (2.5-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg/kg on a body surface area basis). At 0.1 mg/kg (0.5-fold the clinical dose of 2 mg), there were no adverse effects on offspring. Sirolimus did not cause maternal toxicity or affect developmental parameters in the surviving offspring (morphological development, motor activity, learning, or fertility assessment) at 0.5 mg/kg, the highest dose tested.

8.2 Lactation

Risk Summary

It is not known whether sirolimus is present in human milk. There are no data on its effects on the breastfed infant or milk production. The pharmacokinetic and safety profiles of sirolimus in infants are not known. Sirolimus is present in the milk of lactating rats. There is potential for serious adverse effects from sirolimus in breastfed infants based on mechanism of action [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.1)]. The developmental and health benefits of breastfeeding should be considered along with the mother's clinical need for Rapamune and any potential adverse effects on the breastfed child from Rapamune.

8.3 Females and Males of Reproductive Potential


Females should not be pregnant or become pregnant while receiving Rapamune. Advise females of reproductive potential that animal studies have been shown Rapamune to be harmful to the developing fetus. Females of reproductive potential are recommended to use highly effective contraceptive method. Effective contraception must be initiated before Rapamune therapy, during Rapamune therapy, and for 12 weeks after Rapamune therapy has been stopped [see Warnings and Precautions (5.15), Use in Specific Populations (8.1)].


Based on clinical findings and findings in animals, male and female fertility may be compromised by the treatment with Rapamune [see Adverse Reactions (6.7), Nonclinical Toxicology (13.1)]. Ovarian cysts and menstrual disorders (including amenorrhea and menorrhagia) have been reported in females with the use of Rapamune. Azoospermia has been reported in males with the use of Rapamune and has been reversible upon discontinuation of Rapamune in most cases.

8.4 Pediatric Use

Renal Transplant

The safety and efficacy of Rapamune in pediatric patients <13 years have not been established.

The safety and efficacy of Rapamune Oral Solution and Rapamune Tablets have been established for prophylaxis of organ rejection in renal transplantation in children ≥13 years judged to be at low- to moderate-immunologic risk. Use of Rapamune Oral Solution and Rapamune Tablets in this subpopulation of children ≥ 13 years is supported by evidence from adequate and well-controlled trials of Rapamune Oral Solution in adults with additional pharmacokinetic data in pediatric renal transplantation patients [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

Safety and efficacy information from a controlled clinical trial in pediatric and adolescent (< 18 years of age) renal transplant patients judged to be at high-immunologic risk, defined as a history of one or more acute rejection episodes and/or the presence of chronic allograft nephropathy, do not support the chronic use of Rapamune Oral Solution or Tablets in combination with calcineurin inhibitors and corticosteroids, due to the higher incidence of lipid abnormalities and deterioration of renal function associated with these immunosuppressive regimens compared to calcineurin inhibitors, without increased benefit with respect to acute rejection, graft survival, or patient survival [see Clinical Studies (14.6)].


The safety and efficacy of Rapamune in pediatric patients <18 years have not been established.

8.5 Geriatric Use

Clinical studies of Rapamune Oral Solution or Tablets did not include sufficient numbers of patients ≥65 years to determine whether they respond differently from younger patients. Data pertaining to sirolimus trough concentrations suggest that dose adjustments based upon age in geriatric renal patients are not necessary. Differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients have not been identified. In general, dose selection for an elderly patient should be cautious, usually starting at the low end of the dosing range, reflecting the greater frequency of decreased hepatic, or cardiac function, and of concomitant disease or other drug therapy.

8.6 Patients with Hepatic Impairment

The maintenance dose of Rapamune should be reduced in patients with hepatic impairment [see Dosage and Administration (2.7), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

8.7 Patients with Renal Impairment

Dosage adjustment is not required in patients with renal impairment [see Dosage and Administration (2.8), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

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