Highlights for abatacept
abatacept Side Effects
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
- allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
- breathing problems
- chest pain
- signs of infection - fever or chills, cough, unusual tiredness, pain or trouble passing urine, or warm, red or painful skin
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (Report these to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome.):
- nausea, vomiting
- sore throat
- stomach upset
abatacept May Interact with Other Medications
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
- live virus vaccines
This medicine may also interact with the following medications:
How to Use abatacept
This medicine is for infusion into a vein or for injection under the skin. Infusions are given by a health care professional in a hospital or clinic setting. If you are to give your own medicine at home, you will be taught how to prepare and give this medicine under the skin. Use exactly as directed. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
It is important that you put your used needles and syringes in a special sharps container. Do not put them in a trash can. If you do not have a sharps container, call your pharmacist or healthcare provider to get one.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While infusions in a clinic may be prescribed for children as young as 6 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- are taking other medicines to treat rheumatoid arthritis
- infection or history of infections
- recently received or scheduled to receive a vaccine
- scheduled to have surgery
- tuberculosis, a positive skin test for tuberculosis or have recently been in close contact with someone who has tuberculosis
- viral hepatitis
- an unusual or allergic reaction to abatacept, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- pregnant or trying to get pregnant
This medicine is used once a week if given by injection under the skin. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
If you are to be given an infusion, it is important not to miss your dose. Doses are usually every 4 weeks. Call your doctor or health care professional if you are unable to keep an appointment.
Visit your doctor for regular check ups while you are taking this medicine. Tell your doctor or healthcare professional if your symptoms do not start to get better or if they get worse.
Call your doctor or health care professional if you get a cold or other infection while receiving this medicine. Do not treat yourself. This medicine may decrease your body's ability to fight infection. Try to avoid being around people who are sick.
Infusions will be given in a hospital or clinic and will not be stored at home.
Storage for syringes given under the skin and stored at home:
Keep out of the reach of children. Store in a refrigerator between 2 and 8 degrees C (36 and 46 degrees F). Keep this medicine in the original container. Protect from light. Do not freeze. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
Last Updated: November 4, 2011