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Generic Name:

gold-sodium-thiomalate, Injectable solution

All Brands

  • Myochrysine (Discontinued)
A discontinued drug is a drug that has been taken off the market due to safety issues, shortage of raw materials, or low market demand.
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Highlights for gold-sodium-thiomalate

Injectable solution
1

Gold sodium thiomalate is an injectable drug used to treat adult and juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.

2

The effects of gold sodium thiomalate may occur slowly. You may start to see improvement in symptoms after 6–8 weeks of treatment. But it may take months to see full effects from the drug.

3

This drug works the best in the early active stage of rheumatoid arthritis. In late states, gold can’t repair existing damage to your joints. But it may still prevent further damage.

4

The most common side effects include aches and pains, diarrhea, hair loss, and headache.

5

Don’t take gold sodium thiomalate if you’re allergic to any part of the drug, have history of toxicity from gold or other heavy metals, are unable to take care of yourself, or have lupus.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

FDA Warning

This drug has a Black Box Warning. This is the most serious warning from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A black box warning alerts doctors and patients to potentially dangerous effects.

Toxicity. Your doctor may review blood work before giving you any injections. You should report any side effects to your doctor since they may be severe or life threatening.

Sun sensitivity

Skin rash and sunburns may be worse if you’re exposed to sunlight. Stay out of the sun. Wear protective clothing and sunscreen if you can’t avoid the sun. Don’t use sun lamps or tanning beds.

Allergic rash warning

Report any skin rash to your doctor. You may be having an allergic reaction to the medication.

What is gold sodium thiomalate?

Gold sodium thiomalate is a prescription medication. It’s an injectable solution given by a healthcare provider in a hospital or clinical setting. You will not take this drug at home.

This drug may be used as part of a combination therapy. That means you need to take it with other drugs or non-drug therapies.

Why it's used

Gold sodium thiomalate is used to reduce inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis. 

How it works

It isn’t known how gold sodium thiomalate works to treat rheumatoid arthritis. It may work by controlling inflammation of the lining of your joints.

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gold-sodium-thiomalate Side Effects

Injectable solution

Most Common Side Effects

The most common side effects that occur with gold sodium thiomalate include:

  • aches and pains

  • diarrhea

  • hair loss

  • headaches

Serious Side Effects

If you or your child experiences any of these serious side effects, call your doctor right away. If your symptoms are potentially life threatening or if you think you’re experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.

  • allergic reactions, including:

    • skin rash
    • itching
    • hives
    • swelling of your face, lips, or tongue
  • infections. Symptoms may include:

    • fever or chills
    • sore throat
    • mouth sores
  • nervous system problems. Symptoms may include:

    • feeling faint or lightheaded
    • hallucination, loss of contact with reality
    • pain, tingling, and numbness in your hands or feet
  • liver problems. Symptoms may include:

    • unusual weakness or tiredness
    • yellowing of your skin or eyes
    • dark urine
  • breathing problems, such as shortness of breath

  • changes in vision, such as blurred vision and eye pain

  • fast, irregular heart beat

  • loss of appetite or nausea

  • metallic taste in your mouth

  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of your skin, including inside your mouth

  • stomach cramps

  • trouble urinating or change in the amount of urine you pass

  • unusual bleeding or bruising

Pharmacist's Advice
Clinical Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy

You may notice joint pain a day or two following your gold sodium thiomalate injection. This reaction usually eases up after the first few injections.

Mild side effects may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if they’re more severe or don’t go away.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
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gold-sodium-thiomalate May Interact with Other Medications

Injectable solution

Gold sodium thiomalate can interact with other medications, herbs, or vitamins you might be taking. Your healthcare provider will look out for interactions with your current medications. Always be sure to tell your doctor about all medications, herbs or vitamins you’re taking.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking.
Gold Sodium Thiomalate Warnings
diabetes
People with diabetes

Diabetes increases your risk of gold toxicity. You shouldn’t take this gold-containing medication.

heart disease
People with heart disease

Heart disease increases your risk of gold toxicity. You shouldn’t take this gold-containing medication.

kidney disease
People with kidney disease

Gold sodium thiomalate is removed from your body by your kidneys. If you have kidney disease, your kidneys may not be able to remove the drug as well. You may not be able to take gold sodium thiomalate. Your doctor may have to lower your dosage and monitor you closely for signs of toxicity. 

liver disease
People with liver disease

Liver disease increases your risk of gold toxicity and may make it more difficult to detect gold toxicity. If possible, you should be using a different medication to treat your condition.

low blood counts
People with low blood counts

These include low white cells, platelets, or red blood cells. It may be more difficult to detect gold toxicity if you have low blood counts. You shouldn’t take this gold-containing medication.

systemic lupus erythematosus
People with systemic lupus erythematosus

Lupus increases your risk of gold toxicity and may make it more difficult to detect gold toxicity. If possible, you should use a different medication to treat your condition.

pregnant woman
Pregnant women

Gold sodium thiomalate is a category C pregnancy drug. That means two things:

  1. Research in animals has shown adverse effects to the fetus when the mother takes the drug.
  2. There haven’t been enough studies done in humans to be certain how the drug might affect the fetus.

Tell your doctor if you’re pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Gold sodium thiomalate should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

breastfeeding
Women who are nursing

This medication may pass into breast milk. If it does, it may cause side effects in a breastfeeding child.

You may need to decide whether to stop breastfeeding or stop taking gold sodium thiomalate. Gold is removed from your body slowly, so you may need to not breastfeed even after stopping this medication. 

children
For Children

Talk to your pediatrician about using gold sodium thiomalate for your child. This drug may be used for certain conditions in children, but care must be taken to avoid serious side effects.

allergies
Allergies

Gold sodium thiomalate may cause a severe allergic reaction almost immediately after the injection or as late as 10 minutes following the injection. Side effects that may include:

  • shock
  • fainting
  • slow heart rate
  • difficulty in swallowing and breathing
  • rapid swelling of your eyes, lips, tongue, hands, or feet

This reaction may occur at any time during therapy. If this reaction occurs, it usually happens immediately or within 10 minutes after the injection while you’re still with your healthcare provider. If the reaction occurs at another time, call 911 immediately.

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How to Take gold-sodium-thiomalate (Dosage)

Injectable solution

Your doctor will determine a dose that’s right for you based on your individual needs. Your general health may affect your dose. Tell your doctor about all health conditions you have before your doctor or nurse administers the drug to you.

Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
Pharmacist's Advice
Clinical Associate Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy

Gold sodium thiomalate comes with risks if you don’t take it as prescribed by your doctor.

If You Stop or Miss Doses

If you stop taking gold sodium thiomalate, miss doses, or don’t take it on schedule, you may experience symptom flare-ups.

If You Receive Too Much

If you think you’ve received too much gold sodium thiomalate, tell your doctor or health care provider before you leave your injection appointment. If you’ve left the hospital or clinic, go to the emergency room immediately or call a poison control center.

What to Do If You Miss a Dose/Appointment

It’s important not to miss a dose of gold sodium thiomalate. Call your doctor or health care provider if you can’t keep your appointment.

How to Tell the Drug Is Working

Improvements in your arthritis may happen slowly. During the first 6–8 weeks of treatment, you may notice less morning stiffness. Full effects of the medication may not be seen until months after treatment begins.

Is It a Long-Term or Short-Term Treatment?

You might take gold sodium thiomalate injections long term if you respond well to therapy.

This drug is only given in a clinical setting

Coordinate your schedule in advance to avoid missing appointments.

You or your child will have weekly injections at the start of therapy. Depending on how well you do, you may receive a maintenance dose every other week for up to 20 weeks. Once your symptoms begin to show improvement and don’t get worse, injections may be given every 1–4 weeks based on your response.

How Long Does It Take?

You or your child will remain lying down for 10 minutes after the injection.

Travel

Gold sodium thiomalate will be given to you in a hospital or clinic. If you travel, it may be difficult to get your next scheduled dose. Check with your doctor on how to receive your medication. Not all hospitals and clinics may carry this drug or be able to administer it to you.

Clinical Monitoring

Blood tests: Your doctor may do blood tests every 4–6 weeks during treatment to monitor you for serious side effects and abnormal blood cell counts.

Urine tests: Your doctor may do routine urine tests to check for blood or protein in your urine. 

Insurance

Many insurance companies will require a prior authorization before they approve the prescription and pay for gold sodium thiomalate.


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Content developed in collaboration with University of Illinois-Chicago, Drug Information Group

Medically reviewed by Creighton University, Center for Drug Information and Evidence-Based Practice on May 19, 2015

Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or other healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.
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