- What is glatiramer, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for glatiramer?
- What are the side effects of glatiramer?
- What is the dosage for glatiramer?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with glatiramer?
- Is glatiramer safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about glatiramer?
What is glatiramer, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- Glatiramer acetate injection (glatiramer) is indicated for the treatment of patients with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis.
- Glatiramer's mechanism of action is not completely understood. Available data suggests that it may work by modifying immune processes by suppressing T-cells (white blood cells of the immune system) that cause inflammation and destruction of nerves in patients with MS . Glatiramer does not cure MS. It decreases the number of MS flares and lesions in the brain.
- The FDA approved glatiramer in December, 1996.
What brand names are available for glatiramer-injection?
Is glatiramer available as a generic drug?
Do I need a prescription for glatiramer?
What are the uses for glatiramer?
Glatiramer is used for the treatment of patients with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS).
What are the side effects of glatiramer?
Common side effects include:
- Injection site pain
- Injection site redness
- Injection site inflammation
- Injection site itching
- Injection site lump
- Shortness of breath
- Injection site welt
- Joint pain
- Flu symptoms
Other side effects include:
- Weight gain
- Facial swelling
Possible serious side effects include:
What is the dosage for glatiramer?
- The recommended dose for treating relapsing forms of MS is 20 mg injected under the skin daily or 40 mg injected under the skin 3 times a week (at least 48 hours apart).
Which drugs or supplements interact with glatiramer?
- Drug interactions between glatiramer and other drugs have not been evaluated.
- Available information does not suggest that glatiramer significantly interacts with other MS drugs. However, use of glatiramer with other drugs that also suppress the immune system may increase the risk of serious infection.
Is glatiramer safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- Glatiramer has not been adequately studied in pregnant women.
- It is not known if glatiramer acetate is excreted in human milk.
What else should I know about glatiramer?
What preparations of glatiramer-injection are available?
Solution for injection: 20 mg/ml, 40 mg/ml in a single dose, prefilled syringe.
How should I keep glatiramer-injection stored?
- Glatiramer should be stored refrigerated at 2 C to 8 C (36 F to 46 F).
- It also may be stored at room temperature, 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F) for one month if needed.
- Frozen syringes should be discarded.
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Glatiramer (Copaxone, Glatopa) is a multiple sclerosis (MS) drug prescribed to treat individuals with relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS). Common side effects include itching, rash, diarrhea, shortness of breath, pain, redness, inflammation, itching, at the injection site.
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Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
Multiple sclerosis or MS is an autoimmune disorder in which brain and spinal cord nerve cells become demyelinated. This damage results in symptoms that may include numbness, weakness, vertigo, paralysis, and involuntary muscle contractions. Different forms of MS can follow variable courses from relatively benign to life-threatening. MS is treated with disease-modifying therapies. Some MS symptoms can be treated with medications.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Symptoms and Treatments
Multiple sclerosis (MS) symptoms vary from person to person and can last for days to months without periods of remission. Symptoms of MS include sexual problems and problems with the bowel, bladder, eyes, muscles, speech, swallowing, brain, and nervous system. The early symptoms and signs of multiple sclerosis usually start between ages 20-40. MS in children, teens, and those over age 40 is rare. Treatment options for multiple sclerosis vary depending on the type and severity of symptoms. Medications may be prescribed to manage MS symptoms.
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Pregnancy
Multiple sclerosis or MS is a central nervous system disease in which the immune system attacks the myelin sheath (the protective coating around nerves). Symptoms of MS include pain, sexual problems, fatigue, numbness and tingling, emotional changes, and depression.Women who are pregnant and have multiple sclerosis may have more difficulty carrying a pregnancy. Multiple sclerosis does not affect ability to conceive, and does not seem to affect fertility. MS symptoms during pregnancy may stay the same or get better; however, they may worsen after giving birth. Pregnancy decreases the number of relapses, but flares increase in the first 3-6 months after delivery. Pregnant women with MS may carrying a pregnancy more difficult to tell when labor starts, and there is an increased need to use forceps or vacuum to assist with delivery or b7 C-section (Cesarean birth) increases. Some treatment MS drugs may be safe to use during pregnancy; however, some drugs should not be taken, for example, baclofen (Gablofen, Lioresal), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), or solifenacin succinate (VESIcare), and most disease-modifying therapies (DMTs). Talk with your healthcare team about vitamins, supplements, and medications that you are taking if you are pregnant and have MS.
Alternative Treatment (CAM) for MS
The term alternative therapy, in general, is used to describe any medical treatment or intervention that has not been scientifically documented or identified as safe or effective for a specific condition. Alternative therapy encompasses a variety of disciplines that range from diet and exercise to mental conditioning to lifestyle changes.
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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.