Rituximab is a synthetic antibody (protein) that can target antigens, or substances that can cause an immune response. This medication treats non-Hodgkin lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, rheumatoid arthritis, granulomatosis with polyangiitis, microscopic polyangiitis and pemphigus vulgaris.
RITUXIMAB (ri TUX i mab) is a monoclonal antibody. It is used to treat certain types of cancer like non-Hodgkin lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukemia. It is also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, granulomatosis with polyangiitis, microscopic polyangiitis, and pemphigus vulgaris.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): RIABNI, Rituxan, RUXIENCE
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
This medicine is injected into a vein. It is given by a health care provider in a hospital or clinic setting.
A special MedGuide will be given to you before each treatment. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.
Talk to your health care provider about the use of this medicine in children. While this drug may be prescribed for children as young as 6 months for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
Keep appointments for follow-up doses. It is important not to miss your dose. Call your health care provider if you are unable to keep an appointment.
Do not take this medicine with any of the following medicines:
This medicine may also interact with the following medicines:
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
Your condition will be monitored carefully while you are receiving this medicine. You may need blood work done while you are taking this medicine.
This medicine can cause serious infusion reactions. To reduce the risk your health care provider may give you other medicines to take before receiving this one. Be sure to follow the directions from your health care provider.
This medicine may increase your risk of getting an infection. Call your health care provider for advice if you get a fever, chills, sore throat, or other symptoms of a cold or flu. Do not treat yourself. Try to avoid being around people who are sick.
Call your health care provider if you are around anyone with measles, chickenpox, or if you develop sores or blisters that do not heal properly.
Avoid taking medicines that contain aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen, or ketoprofen unless instructed by your health care provider. These medicines may hide a fever.
This medicine may cause serious skin reactions. They can happen weeks to months after starting the medicine. Contact your health care provider right away if you notice fevers or flu-like symptoms with a rash. The rash may be red or purple and then turn into blisters or peeling of the skin. Or, you might notice a red rash with swelling of the face, lips or lymph nodes in your neck or under your arms.
In some patients, this medicine may cause a serious brain infection that may cause death. If you have any problems seeing, thinking, speaking, walking, or standing, tell your healthcare professional right away. If you cannot reach your healthcare professional, urgently seek other source of medical care.
Do not become pregnant while taking this medicine or for at least 12 months after stopping it. Women should inform their health care provider if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. There is potential for serious harm to an unborn child. Talk to your health care provider for more information. Women should use a reliable form of birth control while taking this medicine and for 12 months after stopping it. Do not breast-feed while taking this medicine or for at least 6 months after stopping it.
Side effects that you should report to your health care provider as soon as possible:
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your health care provider if they continue or are bothersome):
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
This medicine is given in a hospital or clinic. It will not be stored at home.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
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Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.