rituximab - injection, Rituxan (cont.)

USES: Rituximab is used alone or with other medications to treat certain types of cancer (e.g., non-Hodgkin's lymphoma). It is a type of medication called a monoclonal antibody. It works by attaching to certain blood cells from your immune system (B cells) and killing them. It is also used with other monoclonal antibodies and radioactive drugs to treat certain cancers.Rituximab is also used with methotrexate to treat moderate-to-severe forms of rheumatoid arthritis. It is usually used for arthritis only after other medications have not worked. It can decrease joint pain and swelling. It is also used to treat certain types of blood vessel disease (such as Wegener's granulomatosis, microscopic polyangiitis).

HOW TO USE: Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start using rituximab and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.This medication will be given by injection into a vein as directed by your doctor. It should be injected slowly over several hours. Do not shake the IV liquid. After adding the drug to the IV fluid, gently turn the bag upside down and over to mix the drug into the liquid. The dose and how often you receive the medication depends on your condition, other treatments, and response to therapy. If you are being treated for cancer, you will receive one or more doses, usually once a week. If you are being treated for arthritis, you will usually receive 2 doses, usually 2 weeks apart.Your doctor should prescribe other medications (e.g., acetaminophen, diphenhydramine, methylprednisolone) for you to use 30 minutes before the start of each treatment to help prevent serious side effects. Your dose will be started slowly, and the rate will be increased if you are tolerating the medication well.If you are giving this medication to yourself at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely.Ask your doctor if you should take your regular medications (e.g., drugs for high blood pressure) before your treatment.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

Pill Finder Tool

Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill identifier tool on RxList.

Back to Medications Index



Get the Latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!