Bimzelx (bimekizumab-bkzx) is a prescription drug that’s used to treat plaque psoriasis in certain adults. Bimzelx comes as a liquid inside prefilled syringes or auto-injectors, and it’s given as an injection under the skin.

Bimzelx basics

Bimzelx contains the active ingredient bimekizumab-bkzx. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.)

Bimzelx is a biologic medication. A biologic is made from parts of living organisms. It’s available only as a brand-name drug. It isn’t available in a biosimilar form.

Biosimilars are like generic drugs. But unlike generics, which are made for nonbiologic drugs, biosimilars are made for biologic drugs.

Biosimilars will have the same active ingredient core name as the brand-name drug. But they’ll have unique suffixes. This is why “-bkzx” appears at the end of the name of the active ingredient. This is to show that it’s distinct from biosimilars that may be created in the future.

Bimzelx is prescribed to treat moderate to severe plaque psoriasis in adults. It’s prescribed for adults with psoriasis who are eligible for systemic treatment (which affects the entire body) or phototherapy (therapy that uses UV light).

Plaque psoriasis is a skin condition caused by inflammation. It’s believed to be related to the immune system working excessively and inappropriately, which results in inflammation in your skin and body.

The condition may cause symptoms such as plaques (raised patches), which may bleed, crack, or drain. These patches could be itchy or painful. The color of these patches can vary based on the color of your skin.

Bimzelx works to treat plaque psoriasis by blocking certain immune system proteins, called cytokines, in your body. Cytokines send signals to the immune system that can cause inflammation. By blocking these proteins, Bimzelx helps to reduce inflammation and ease your plaque psoriasis symptoms.

Like most drugs, Bimzelx may cause mild or serious side effects. The lists below describe some of the more common side effects that Bimzelx may cause. These lists don’t include all possible side effects.

Keep in mind that side effects of a drug can depend on:

  • your age
  • other health conditions you have
  • other medications you take

Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you more about the potential side effects of Bimzelx. They can also suggest ways to help reduce side effects.

Mild side effects

Here’s a list of some of the mild side effects that Bimzelx can cause. To learn about other mild side effects, talk with your doctor or pharmacist or read Bimzelx’s prescribing information.

Mild side effects of Bimzelx that have been reported include:

Mild side effects of many drugs may go away within a few days to a couple of weeks. But if they become bothersome, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Allergic reaction” section below.

Serious side effects

Serious side effects from Bimzelx can occur, but they aren’t common. If you have serious side effects from Bimzelx, call your doctor right away. But if you think you’re having a medical emergency, you should call 911 or your local emergency number.

Serious side effects of Bimzelx that have been reported include:

* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Allergic reaction” section below.

Allergic reaction

Although allergic reaction wasn’t reported in studies of Bimzelx, it can still happen.

Symptoms of a mild allergic reaction can include:

  • skin rash
  • itchiness
  • flushing (temporary warmth, redness, or deepening of skin color)

A more severe allergic reaction is rare but possible. Symptoms of a severe allergic reaction can include swelling under your skin, usually in your eyelids, lips, hands, or feet. They can also include swelling of your tongue, mouth, or throat, which can cause difficulty breathing.

Call your doctor right away if you have an allergic reaction to Bimzelx. But if you think you’re having a medical emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number.

Your doctor will recommend the dosage of Bimzelx that’s right for you. Below are commonly prescribed dosages, but always follow the dosage your doctor prescribes.

Form and strength

Bimzelx comes as a liquid solution that’s available in a prefilled syringe or prefilled auto-injector.

The drug is given as an injection under your skin. It’s available in one strength: 160 milligrams in 1 milliliter of liquid solution (160 mg/mL).

Recommended dosage

The usual Bimzelx dosage is 320 mg, given as two injections of 160 mg each. To begin treatment, you’ll inject this dose every 4 weeks for the first 16 weeks, including week 0 (your first dose) for a total of five doses. Then, you’ll switch to a dose of 320 mg every 8 weeks.

If you have a body weight of 120 kilograms (kg), or about 265 pounds (lb) or more, your doctor may prescribe a dose of 320 mg every 4 weeks after your first 16 weeks.

How to use

Bimzelx is given as an injection under your skin. You may receive your first dose at your doctor’s office. After that, your doctor may teach you or a caregiver how to give the injections at home.

The manufacturer’s website provides videos explaining how to inject Bimzelx using either a prefilled syringe or prefilled auto-injector.

Questions about Bimzelx

Below are some common questions about treatment with Bimzelx.

  • Should I inject Bimzelx with food? Bimzelx can be injected with or without food.
  • Is there a best time of day to inject Bimzelx? Bimzelx can be injected at any time of day.
  • What if I miss a dose of Bimzelx? If you miss a dose of Bimzelx, inject it as soon as you remember. Then, continue following your regular dosing schedule. You should not inject two doses at once to make up for a missed dose. Doing so could raise your risk of side effects.
  • Will I need Bimzelx treatment long term? Bimzelx is usually prescribed as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that it’s safe and effective for your condition, they’ll likely prescribe it long term.

Overdose

Do not inject more Bimzelx than your doctor prescribes. Injecting more than this can lead to harmful effects.

What to do in case you injected too much Bimzelx

Call your doctor if you think you’ve injected too much Bimzelx. You can also call 800-222-1222 to reach America’s Poison Centers or use its online resource. But if you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number. Or go to the nearest emergency room.

Below is important information you should consider before starting Bimzelx.

Interactions

Taking a drug with certain medications, vaccines, foods, and other things can affect how the drug works. These effects are called interactions.

Before starting Bimzelx treatment, talk with your doctor and pharmacist. Tell them about all prescription, over-the-counter, and other drugs you take. Also, tell them about any vitamins, herbs, and supplements you take. Sharing this information can help you avoid potential interactions.

Bimzelx can interact with several other medications. It can also interact with certain supplements as well as certain foods.

If you have questions about drug interactions that may affect you, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Drug interactions

Examples of medications that can interact with Bimzelx include:

This list may not contain all drugs that may interact with Bimzelx. If you have questions about drug interactions that may affect you, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Bimzelx and alcohol

Alcohol is not known to interact with Bimzelx. It’s likely safe to consume alcohol during your Bimzelx treatment.

However, alcohol may make your plaque psoriasis symptoms worse. Because of this, your doctor may recommend that you limit the amount of alcohol you drink.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

It’s not known whether it’s safe to inject Bimzelx during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, or planning to become pregnant or to breastfeed, talk with your doctor before starting Bimzelx treatment.

If you and your doctor agree you’ll inject Bimzelx during pregnancy, consider joining the drug’s pregnancy registry. This registry helps determine whether it’s safe to inject Bimzelx during pregnancy. You can learn more or sign up on the registry website or by calling 1-877-311-8972.

Warnings

Bimzelx can sometimes cause harmful effects in people who have certain conditions. This is known as a drug-condition interaction. Other factors may also affect whether Bimzelx is a good treatment option for you.

Talk with your doctor about your health history before you start Bimzelx. Be sure to tell them if any of the following factors apply to you:

* A live vaccine contains a weakened form of the virus or bacterium it’s meant to protect against.

Help is out there

If you or someone you know is in crisis and considering suicide or self-harm, please seek support:

If you’re calling on behalf of someone else, stay with them until help arrives. You may remove weapons or substances that can cause harm if you can do so safely.

If you are not in the same household, stay on the phone with them until help arrives.

Was this helpful?

Find answers to some commonly asked questions about Bimzelx.

Does Bimzelx cause long-term side effects?

It’s possible. Examples of long-term side effects reported in Bimzelx’s studies include:

Talk with your doctor to learn more about possible side effects of Bimzelx and how long they may last.

How does Bimzelx compare with Cosentyx?

Bimzelx and secukinumab (Cosentyx) are both prescribed to treat plaque psoriasis. In addition, Cosentyx is approved to treat several other conditions, including psoriatic arthritis. (Bimzelx isn’t approved for this condition.) Cosentyx’s prescribing information has a full list of conditions the drug is approved to treat.

Another difference between the drugs is that Bimzelx is approved for plaque psoriasis in adults only. Cosentyx, on the other hand, can also be prescribed to certain children with this condition.

If you have other questions about how Bimzelx and Cosentyx compare, talk with your doctor. They can help you find the best treatment option for you.

Is Bimzelx prescribed for psoriatic arthritis?

Bimzelx is not approved to treat psoriatic arthritis. But your doctor may prescribe the drug off-label for this use. (With off-label use, doctors prescribe a drug for a purpose other than what it’s approved for.)

Bimzelx was approved to treat plaque psoriasis in 2023. The drug hasn’t yet been studied for treating psoriatic arthritis. But other drugs that work similar to Bimzelx, such as Cosentyx, are approved to treat psoriatic arthritis. So Bimzelx may be studied for this use in the future.

To learn more about treatment options for psoriatic arthritis, including Bimzelx, talk with your doctor.

Whether you have health insurance or not, cost may be a factor when you’re considering Bimzelx. What you’ll pay for Bimzelx may depend on several things, such as your treatment plan and the pharmacy you use.

If you have questions about how to pay for your prescription, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. A program called Bimzelx Navigate may also be available.

You can also check out this article to learn more about saving money on prescriptions.

Other drugs are available that can treat your condition. If you’d like to explore an alternative to Bimzelx, talk with your doctor. They can tell you about other medications that might work well for you.

The following drugs are similar to Bimzelx:

If you have questions about Bimzelx, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. Questions you may want to ask include:

  • How will we determine whether Bimzelx is working for my plaque psoriasis?
  • If Bimzelx interacts with a health condition I have, is it still safe for me to inject?
  • Can you decrease my dose of Bimzelx if I develop side effects from the drug?

To learn more about Bimzelx, see this article:

To get information on different conditions and tips for improving your health, subscribe to any of Healthline’s newsletters. You may also want to check out the online communities at Bezzy. It’s a place where people with certain conditions can find support and connect with others.

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 another 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.