If you have certain types of arthritis, your doctor might suggest Kevzara (sarilumab) as a treatment option for you.
Kevzara is a prescription medication used to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in adults. It’s given as an injection under your skin. It may be used alone or with other RA medications.
Your doctor will typically recommend Kevzara if you’ve already tried another medication for RA that didn’t work well enough.
Kevzara belongs to a group of drugs called monoclonal antibodies. These are molecules produced in a lab that act like natural antibodies to help your immune system attack harmful cells.
This article describes the dosages of Kevzara, as well as its strengths and how to use it. To learn more about Kevzara, see this in-depth article.
Note: This article covers Kevzara’s typical dosages, which the drug’s manufacturer provides. But when using Kevzara, always use the dosage your doctor prescribes.
Kevzara is given as an injection under your skin. Your doctor will show you how to give yourself the injection.
What is Kevzara’s form?
Kevzara comes as a liquid solution in a prefilled pen or syringe.
What strengths does Kevzara come in?
Kevzara is available in two strengths:
- 150 milligram (mg) in 1.14 milliliter (mL)
- 200 mg in 1.14 mL
What are the typical dosages of Kevzara?
Your doctor will likely start you on the standard Kevzara dosing for rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The dosage of Kevzara for RA is 200 mg once every 2 weeks. They’ll then adjust your dosage if your blood tests indicate it needs to be changed.
The information below describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. But be sure to use the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. They’ll determine the best dosage to fit your needs.
You’ll typically inject the contents of a prefilled pen or syringe with Kevzara 200 mg in 1.14 mL once every 2 weeks.
Is Kevzara used long term?
Yes, Kevzara is typically used as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that Kevzara is safe and effective for you, you’ll likely use it long term.
Your doctor may adjust your Kevzara dosage depending on certain factors.
You’ll typically start with a dose of 200 mg. Your doctor may permanently or temporarily decrease your dose to 150 mg if your blood tests show Kevzara is negatively affecting your immune system.
Your doctor may also stop your Kevzara dose temporarily if you develop an infection.
The dosage of Kevzara your doctor prescribes may depend on several factors. These include:
- your blood test results, specifically concerning your immune system
- your body’s reaction to Kevzara
- other conditions you may have (see “Dosage adjustments” under “What is Kevzara’s dosage?”)
You’ll give yourself a dose of Kevzara by injecting it under your skin after your doctor shows you how to do so safely. Carefully follow the instructions your doctor gives you.
When you inject Kevzara, you’ll use a place on your body where the skin is not bruised or damaged. You can use the belly area or upper thigh. You’ll change the injection location each time, so you don’t always inject the same body part.
Your caregiver may also do the injection for you. If another person does the injection, they can also use the upper part of your arm.
Kevzara prefilled syringe
You’ll take the Kevzara syringe out of the refrigerator and let it sit for 30 minutes. Then you’ll check the syringe to make sure the solution looks clear. Be sure to inject the entire contents of the syringe for your Kevzara dose.
Kevzara prefilled pen
You’ll take the Kevzara syringe out of the refrigerator and let it sit for 60 minutes. Then you’ll check the pen to make sure the solution looks clear. Be sure to inject the entire contents of the pen for your Kevzara dose.
For instructions on how to inject Kevzara, see the manufacturer’s website. If you still have questions about how to safely inject Kevzara, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
For information on Kevzara’s expiration, storage, and disposal, see this article.
Try not to miss a dose of Kevzara. If you do miss a dose, inject it when you remember. But if it’s almost time for your next dose, just inject that one. Don’t inject two doses at once. Let your doctor know if you missed a dose.
If you need help remembering to inject your dose of Kevzara on time, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or downloading a reminder app on your phone.
Don’t use more Kevzara than your doctor prescribes. Using more than this can lead to serious side effects.
What to do in case you use too much Kevzara
Call your doctor right away if you think you’ve used too much Kevzara. You can also call 800-222-1222 to reach the American Association of Poison Control Centers or use its online resource. If you have severe symptoms, call 911 (or your local emergency number) immediately or go to the nearest emergency room.
The sections above describe the typical dosages provided by the drug manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Kevzara for you, they’ll prescribe the dosage that’s right for you.
Remember, you shouldn’t change your dosage of Kevzara without your doctor’s recommendation. Always use Kevzara exactly as prescribed. Talk with your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your current dosage.
Here are some examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor:
- My syringe looked like it was not full. Did I get the entire Kevzara dose?
- What can I expect to feel like after injecting my first Kevzara dose?
- If I accidentally leave my prefilled pen out for longer than 60 minutes, can I still use that dose?
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I just looked back at the prefilled syringe, and there is some liquid left over. Does that mean I didn’t get the full dose?Anonymous
No, it doesn’t mean you didn’t get the full dose. When injecting your dose of Kevzara, you should press the plunger on the syringe until you cannot press it any further. This applies to both the 200-mg and 150-mg dose syringes. Pressing the plunger as far as it will go when giving yourself your injection will ensure you’ve received the entire dose. Syringes have dead space, where leftover fluid remains after you inject the entire syringe. This is normal. Syringes are filled to account for this leftover fluid, so you receive your entire dose of medication.
If you have questions about giving yourself a Kevzara injection, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist. They will be able to show you how to inject this medication properly.Dena Westphalen, PharmDAnswers represent the opinions of our medical experts. All content is strictly informational and should not be considered medical advice.
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.