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- Psoriasis Quiz: Test Your Medical IQ
- Moderate to Severe Forms of Psoriasis Slideshow
- What is secukinumab, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What brand names are available for secukinumab?
- Is secukinumab available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for secukinumab?
- What are the side effects of secukinumab?
- What is the dosage for secukinumab?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with secukinumab?
- Is secukinumab safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about secukinumab?
What is secukinumab, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Secukinumab is an injectable biologic drug that suppresses the immune system and is used for the treatment of psoriasis. It is an antibody that binds to interleukin 17A (IL-17A), a chemical produced by cells in the body that stimulates immune reactions. Scientists believe that psoriasis is caused by an increase in the production of T-lymphocytes in response to the attachment of a stimulant, such as interleukin, to the lymphocyte. Stimulated T-lymphocytes cause skin cells to grow rapidly, and the rapid growth of the skin cells produces the skin plaques of psoriasis. Secukinumab reduces symptoms of psoriasis (inflammation and excessive production of skin cells) by attaching to IL-17A, preventing it from binding and activating T-lymphocytes. The FDA approved secukinumab in January, 2015.
What are the side effects of secukinumab?
The most common side effects of secukinumab are:
Secukinumab may reduce the ability of the immune system to fight infections, increasing the risk of infections such as tuberculosis (TB), and infections caused by bacteria, fungi, or viruses. It also may cause a flare up of Crohn's disease. The cap of the Sensoready pen and the prefilled syringe in which secukinumab is packaged contains natural rubber latex which may cause an allergic reaction in latex-sensitive people.
What is the dosage for secukinumab?
The recommended dose is 300 mg injected under the skin at weeks 0, 1, 2, 3 and 4 followed by 300 mg every 4 weeks. For some patients, a dose of 150 mg may be acceptable.
Which drugs or supplements interact with secukinumab?
Live vaccines should not be administered to patients treated with secukinumab because they may develop active disease from the live viruses contained in the vaccine because of their weakened immune system. Vaccine containing killed virus may not generate an adequate immune response because secukinumab suppresses the immune system.
Is secukinumab safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
Use of secukinumab during pregnancy has not been evaluated.
Use of secukinumab by nursing mothers has not been evaluated. It is not known whether secukinumab is excreted in human milk.
What else should I know about secukinumab?
What preparations of secukinumab are available?
- Solution for injection: 150 mg in Sensoready Pen or single use prefilled syringe
- Powder for injection: 150 mg single use vial
How should I keep secukinumab stored?
Secukinumab Sensoready pens, prefilled syringes and vials must be refrigerated at 2 C to 8 C (36 F to 46 F). They should not be frozen and should be kept in their original cartons to protect them from light until the time of administration.
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Secukinumab (Cosentyx) is a prescription drug used to treat moderate to severe plaque psoriasis in individuals who are are 18 years of age or older, and are candidates for systemic therapy. Side effects, drug interactions, dosing, storage, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety information should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.
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