Taltz can also be used to treat plaque psoriasis in some children.
To learn more about these conditions and how Taltz is used, see the “What is Taltz used for?” section below.
Taltz contains the active drug ixekizumab, which is a biologic medication. A biologic is made from parts of living organisms.
Taltz is not 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.) Instead, ixekizumab comes only as the brand-name drug Taltz.
Taltz comes as a liquid solution inside prefilled syringes and autoinjectors. (An autoinjector is a device that injects a dose of medication when you press a button.)
You’ll take Taltz as an injection under your skin. At first, your healthcare professional will give the injection to you. But they can also teach you or your caregiver how to inject the drug at home.
In this article we’ll describe Taltz’s side effects, uses, how it compares with other treatments, and more.
Like most drugs, Taltz may cause mild or serious side effects. The lists below describe some of the more common side effects that Taltz 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’re taking
Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you more about the potential side effects of Taltz. They can also suggest ways to help reduce side effects.
Mild side effects
Here’s a short list of some of the mild side effects that Taltz can cause. To learn about other mild side effects, talk with your doctor or pharmacist, or read Taltz’s medication guide.
Mild side effects of Taltz that have been reported include:
- conjunctivitis (pink eye)
- injection site reaction, such as redness or soreness*
- upper respiratory infection, such as the common cold or the flu*
- fungal infection, such as athlete’s foot or oral thrush*
Mild side effects of many drugs may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. But if they become bothersome, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
* For more information on this side effect, see the “Side effect focus” section below.
Serious side effects
Serious side effects from Taltz can occur, but they aren’t common. If you have serious side effects from Taltz, call your doctor right away. But if you think you’re having a medical emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number.
Serious side effects of Taltz that have been reported include:
- serious infection, such as tuberculosis (TB)*
- inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, which may cause diarrhea*
- allergic reaction*
* For more information on this side effect, see the “Side effect focus” section below.
Side effect focus
Learn more about some of the side effects Taltz may cause.
Injection site reaction
After receiving an injection of Taltz, you may have some soreness, redness, or a change in skin color around the injection site. Reactions such as these are common with Taltz injections. The reaction is usually mild and gets better in a few days.
What might help
To help reduce your risk for an injection site reaction with Taltz:
- use a different injection site each time you take a dose of Taltz and make a note of your injection site each time you take a dose
- don’t take the injection in areas of skin that are tender, red, discolored, bruised, hard, or affected by psoriasis
If you have an injection site reaction that bothers you, it may help to apply a cold pack to the area. If you have a reaction that’s severe or doesn’t get better in a few days, call your doctor.
It’s common to get mild infections from time to time while you’re taking Taltz. Mild infections usually get better with treatment, but they can sometimes become more serious. Examples of mild infections include:
- upper respiratory infection, such as coughs, colds, or throat infection
- fungal infection, such as athlete’s foot or oral thrush
- conjunctivitis (pink eye)
Symptoms of infection can vary depending on the type of infection you have. But they may include:
- fever or chills
- sore throat
- runny or blocked nose
- warm, red, discolored, itchy, or sore areas of skin
- red, sore, itchy, or sticky eyes
- white patches inside your mouth
- burning sensation when urinating
- belly pain
What might help
To help reduce your risk for infection with Taltz:
- wash your hands with soap often, especially after being in public places
- avoid being in crowds and around people who are ill
- avoid sharing towels and face cloths with other people
- talk with your doctor about any vaccinations you might need before you start Taltz, such as the flu or pneumonia vaccine
If you get any symptoms of infection while you’re taking Taltz, call your doctor. They may recommend taking medication to treat the infection. Be sure to call your doctor right away if your symptoms get worse, or the infection doesn’t get better with treatment.
Inflammatory bowel disease
On rare occasions, taking Taltz can cause you to develop inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). If you already have IBD, taking Taltz could make your IBD worse.
Symptoms of IBD can include:
What might help
If you have new or worsening symptoms of IBD, call your doctor right away. You may need to stop taking Taltz.
Some people may have an allergic reaction to Taltz.
Symptoms of a mild allergic reaction can include:
- skin rash
- 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, typically in your eyelids, lips, hands, or feet. They can also include swelling of your tongue, mouth, or throat, which can cause trouble breathing.
Call your doctor right away if you have an allergic reaction to Taltz. If you think you’re having a medical emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number.
Your doctor will explain how you should take Taltz. They’ll also explain how much to take and how often. Be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions. Below are commonly used dosages, but always take the dosage your doctor prescribes.
You’ll take Taltz as an injection under your skin.
Your healthcare professional will give you the injection at first. But they can also teach you or your caregiver how to give yourself the injection at home. Detailed instructions and videos are available on the manufacturer’s website.
Taltz comes as a liquid solution inside prefilled syringes and autoinjectors. (An autoinjector is a device that injects a dose of medication when you press a button.) Both products contain 80 milligrams (mg) of Taltz and are for single use only.
You should store Taltz in the refrigerator. Before you inject a dose of the drug, remove it from the fridge and let it warm up to room temperature. You should leave it out of the fridge for at least 30 minutes, without taking the needle cap off.
Taltz injection sites
You can get Taltz injections in the following sites on your body:
- the front of your thighs
- your belly, avoiding the area 1 inch (in) around your belly button
- the back of your upper arms, if someone else is giving you the injection
Your dosing schedule for Taltz depends on the condition being treated.
If you take Taltz for psoriasis, you’ll typically have one injection once every 2 weeks for 12 weeks. After this you’ll have one injection every 4 weeks.
If you take Taltz for a form of arthritis, you’ll typically have one injection every 4 weeks. But dosing for psoriatic arthritis in people who also have psoriasis is the same as for psoriasis. (See above for this dosage.)
For most conditions, your doctor will give you two injections for your first dose. This is called a loading dose. It helps the treatment start to work faster.
Taking Taltz with other drugs
Taltz is typically taken on its own for all of its uses. If you use any other medications for your condition, ask your doctor if you should continue using them after you start taking Taltz.
Questions about taking Taltz
- What if I miss a dose of Taltz? If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible. Then continue with your usual dosing schedule. But if it’s not long until your next dose is due, ask your doctor if you should take or skip the missed dose.
- Will I need to use Taltz long term? Yes, Taltz is meant to be used as a long-term treatment. If it works for you without causing troublesome side effects, you’ll typically use it long term.
- Should I take Taltz with food? It doesn’t matter. Food doesn’t affect how well the injection is absorbed into your body.
- How long does Taltz take to work? Taltz starts to work soon after you have your first injection. But it might take a few weeks before you notice your symptoms start to ease. It can take several weeks for the medication to have its full effect.
Questions for your doctor
You may have questions about Taltz and your treatment plan. It’s important to discuss all your concerns with your doctor.
Here are a few tips that might help guide your discussion:
- Before your appointment, write down questions such as:
- How will Taltz affect my body, mood, or lifestyle?
- Bring someone with you to your appointment if doing so will help you feel more comfortable.
- If you don’t understand something related to your condition or treatment, ask your doctor to explain it to you.
Remember, your doctor and other healthcare professionals are available to help you. And they want you to get the best care possible. So don’t be afraid to ask questions or offer feedback on your treatment.
It’s used to treat the following conditions:
- Plaque psoriasis that’s moderate or severe. Your doctor may prescribe Taltz for plaque psoriasis that could benefit from phototherapy or systemic therapy. (Phototherapy is treatment with light. Systemic therapy istreatment that affects your whole body and is taken by mouth or as an injection.) With plaque psoriasis, you have silvery, scaly patches on your skin that may be inflamed and itchy. Taltz is prescribed for this use in adults and children ages 6 years and older.
- Psoriatic arthritis. Your doctor may prescribe Taltz for psoriatic arthritis that’s active (causing symptoms). Psoriatic arthritis is a form of arthritis that can develop in some people with psoriasis. Symptoms of psoriatic arthritis include joint pain, swelling, and stiffness. Taltz is prescribed for this use in adults.
- Ankylosing spondylitis (AS). Your doctor may prescribe Taltz for AS that’s active (causing symptoms). AS is a form of arthritis that mainly affects the spine. It causes joint damage and can lead to joints in your spine fusing together. Symptoms of AS include back pain and stiffness. Taltz is prescribed for this use in adults.
- Nonradiographic axial spondyloarthritis. Your doctor may prescribe Taltz for this condition if it’s active (causing symptoms). This is a form of arthritis that affects the spine and pelvis. Symptoms of this condition include back and hip pain, and stiffness. Nonradiographic means that the condition doesn’t show up on X-rays. Taltz is used if signs of inflammation show up in MRI scans or blood tests. Taltz is prescribed for this use in adults.
Taltz treats these conditions by blocking the action of a specific immune system protein called interleukin 17A (IL-17A). High levels of this protein are found in people with these forms of psoriasis and arthritis. These proteins cause responses in the immune system that create inflammation.
By blocking IL-17A, Taltz stops the immune responses that create inflammation in your skin or joints. It helps clear up skin plaques in psoriasis. It also helps reduce joint pain, swelling, stiffness, and damage in these forms of arthritis.
Costs of prescription drugs can vary depending on many factors. These factors include what your insurance plan covers and which pharmacy you use. To find current prices for Taltz in your area, visit WellRx.com.
If you have questions about how to pay for your prescription, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. You can also visit the Taltz manufacturer’s website to see if they have support options.
Find answers to some commonly asked questions about Taltz.
How does Taltz work?
Taltz treats certain forms of psoriasis and arthritis by affecting part of your immune system. With certain forms of psoriasis and arthritis, your immune system is overactive and attacks cells in your body by mistake.
With psoriasis, your immune system attacks your skin, causing inflamed, scaly, itchy patches. With arthritis, your immune system attacks your joints, causing inflammation that leads to pain, stiffness, and joint damage.
Taltz has a very targeted mechanism of action. It works by blocking the action of a specific immune system protein called interleukin-17A (IL-17A). This protein causes reactions in your immune system that create inflammation. It’s found in high levels in people with certain forms of psoriasis and arthritis.
By blocking IL-17A, Taltz stops the immune reactions that cause the inflammation in your skin or joints. This helps reduce the symptoms of these conditions.
Will I have weight gain or weight loss with Taltz?
You’re unlikely to. Weight changes weren’t reported as a side effect of Taltz in studies of the medication. But weight loss could be a symptom of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) or tuberculosis, both of which are rare but possible side effects of Taltz.
If you have weight loss or weight gain while you’re taking Taltz, talk with your doctor. They can look into what’s causing it.
Does Taltz cause hair loss, fatigue, or depression?
It’s not known to. These side effects weren’t reported in studies of Taltz. But these problems can be caused by the conditions Taltz is used to treat. For example, hair loss can result from psoriasis of the scalp. And fatigue (lack of energy) and depression are common in people with some forms of arthritis.
If you have hair loss, fatigue, or depression while taking Taltz, talk with your doctor. They can help find the cause and recommend ways to manage these problems.
How does Taltz compare with Skyrizi?
Taltz is used for plaque psoriasis and certain forms of arthritis in adults. It’s also used for plaque psoriasis in children ages 6 years and older. Skyrizi is only used for plaque psoriasis in adults.
Both drugs work by blocking immune system proteins that are overactive in people with psoriasis. Taltz is an interleukin-17A blocker, while Skyrizi is an interleukin-23 blocker. Side effects are similar with these drugs. And both drugs can increase the risk of infection.
Taltz and Skyrizi are given as injections under the skin. Both of them can be self-injected after your doctor shows you how to do so. Taltz needs to be taken more often than Skyrizi.
To learn more about Skyrizi, check out this article. Talk with your doctor if you’re wondering which of these drugs might be best for you.
Is Taltz used to treat rheumatoid arthritis?
Taltz isn’t approved to treat rheumatoid arthritis (RA). But it might be used off-label for RA if other treatments haven’t worked. Off-label use is when a drug is used for a purpose that hasn’t been approved.
Talk with your doctor if you’d like to find out more about taking Taltz for RA.
How should I store Taltz?
You should store Taltz in the fridge at a temperature of 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C). Make sure the drug doesn’t freeze. Don’t use Taltz if it’s been frozen. Before you inject Taltz, remove it from the fridge and let it warm up to room temperature. You should leave it out of the fridge for at least 30 minutes without taking the needle cap off.
If needed, you can keep Taltz at room temperature, up to 86°F (30°C), for up to 5 days. But if you don’t use it within 5 days, you’ll need to safely dispose of it. Don’t put Taltz back in the fridge once it’s been kept at room temperature.
Always keep Taltz in the original carton to protect it from light.
Taltz and Cosentyx are very similar medications and they’re both used to treat the same conditions. Both are used in adults for psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, spondyloarthritis, and plaque psoriasis. They’re also used for plaque psoriasis in children ages 6 years and older.
Taltz contains ixekizumab, while Cosentyx contains secukinumab. Both drugs are biologics (drugs made using parts of living organisms). Both also belong to the same class of medications, called interleukin-17A blockers.
Taltz and Cosentyx are both given as injections under the skin. And both can be self-injected after your doctor shows you how to do so. They have very similar side effects, including a risk of infection. But injection site reactions are more common with Taltz, while diarrhea is more common with Cosentyx.
If you’d like to know more about how Taltz and Cosentyx compare, see this article. Also, talk with your doctor about which drug is better for you.
Some important things to discuss with your doctor when considering Taltz treatment include:
- your overall health
- any medical conditions you may have
- other medications you’re taking
These and other considerations are described below.
Taking medications, vaccines, foods, and other things with a certain drug can affect how the drug works. These effects are called interactions.
Interactions with drugs or supplements
Taltz isn’t expected to interact with other drugs or supplements. But it’s important to tell your doctor about any medications, herbs, or vitamins you’re using. Some of these products may interfere with Taltz, or vice versa.
Before taking Taltz, be sure to tell your doctor about all medications you take, including prescription and over-the-counter types. Also describe any vitamins, herbs, or supplements you use. Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you about any interactions these items may cause with Taltz.
Interactions with vaccines
Live vaccines. You shouldn’t get live vaccines while you’re taking Taltz. Live vaccines contain weakened forms of live bacteria or viruses. They don’t cause an infection in people with a healthy immune system. But if you have one of these vaccines while you’re taking Taltz, the vaccine could cause serious infection.
Examples of live vaccines that you shouldn’t get while taking Taltz include:
This also includes the nasal spray flu vaccine that’s given into your nose. But it’s fine to get the injected flu vaccine while you’re taking Taltz. See below for more information on flu vaccines.
Inactivated vaccines. Inactivated vaccines contain bacteria or viruses that aren’t alive, or parts of these germs. These vaccines can’t cause an infection in people who get them. But if you get one of these vaccines while you’re taking Taltz, the vaccine could be less effective than usual.
Because of this, it’s best to get any vaccines you may need before you start treatment with Taltz. Talk with your doctor about any vaccinations you may need before you start taking Taltz.
Examples of inactivated vaccines that your doctor might recommend you get before you start Taltz include:
Taltz may not be right for you if you have certain medical conditions or other factors that affect your health. Talk with your doctor about your health history before you take Taltz. Factors to consider include those in the list below.
- Infection. Taltz can weaken part of your immune system and increase your risk for infection. This includes serious infections such as TB. Before starting Taltz, your doctor will test you for TB. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have any symptoms of infection, or if you often get infections. If you have an infection, your doctor will usually prescribe medication to treat it before you start Taltz.
- Allergic reaction. If you’ve had an allergic reaction to Taltz or any of its ingredients, you shouldn’t take Taltz. Ask your doctor what other medications are better options for you.
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). If you have IBD, such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, taking Taltz could make it worse. Ask your doctor if Taltz is right for you. If you do take Taltz, tell your doctor if your IBD symptoms get worse. You may need to stop Taltz.
Taltz and alcohol
Drinking alcohol with Taltz won’t affect the way this medication works. But it might increase side effects such as nausea.
In addition, if you have psoriasis, which Taltz is used to treat, drinking alcohol could make your condition worse.
If you drink alcohol, ask your doctor how much is safe for you to drink with Taltz.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
It’s not known if Taltz is safe to take during pregnancy or breastfeeding. If you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to become pregnant or breastfeed, talk with your doctor. They can discuss the possible risks and benefits of Taltz with you.
Taltz and Humira are both biologics (drugs made using parts of living organisms). They’re both used for plaque psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis. Humira can also be used for several other conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Although they’re both biologics, Taltz and Humira belong to different groups of drugs. This means they work in different ways. Each drug blocks a specific immune system protein that’s overactive in people with certain conditions.
Taltz contains ixekizumab, which is an interleukin-17A blocker. Humira contains adalimumab, which is a tumor necrosis factor-alpha blocker.
Both Taltz and Humira are given by injection under the skin. Both can be self-injected after your doctor shows you how to do so.
These drugs have some similar side effects, including a risk of infections. But they also have some different side effects.
If you’d like to see a side-by-side comparison of these drugs, check out this article. Also, ask your doctor which drug is right for your condition.
Don’t take more Taltz than your doctor prescribes. Using more than this can lead to serious side effects.
What to do in case you take too much Taltz
Call your doctor if you think you’ve taken too much Taltz. You can also call 800-222-1222 to reach the American Association of Poison Control 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.
If you have any questions about Taltz treatment, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They can give you more information about this drug. They can also talk with you about other treatment options for your condition.
Questions you might want to ask your doctor about Taltz include:
- How effective is Taltz? Can it cure my condition?
- I’m already using other treatments for my condition. Should I take Taltz in addition to these or instead of them?
- Can anything make Taltz less effective?
- How long can I take Taltz for?
- Is Taltz safe to use in people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?
Here are a few Healthline articles you might find helpful:
- Psoriasis Treatment
- 12 Ways to Treat Psoriasis at Home
- Treatment Options for Moderate to Severe Psoriatic Arthritis
- 6 Home Remedies for Psoriatic Arthritis Pain
- Treatment for Ankylosing Spondylitis
- Are There Natural Treatments for Ankylosing Spondylitis?
You can also sign up for Healthline’s psoriasis newsletter for more information and updates on this condition.
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.