What is this medication?
OMALIZUMAB (oh mah lye ZOO mab) prevents the symptoms of asthma. It is prescribed when other medications have not worked well enough. It may also be used to treat nasal polyps and chronic hives. It works by reducing the release of substances in your body that cause allergy symptoms. This decreases inflammation of the airways and makes it easier to breathe. It also reduces itching. Do not use it to treat a sudden asthma attack. It is a monoclonal antibody.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Xolair, Xolair Prefilled
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- Have or have had a parasite infection
- An unusual or allergic reaction to omalizumab, hamster proteins, latex, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
This medication is injected under the skin. It is usually given by your care team in a hospital or clinic setting. It may also be given at home. If you get this medication at home, you will be taught how to prepare and give it. Use exactly as directed. Take it as directed on the prescription label. Keep taking it unless your care team tells you to stop.
It is important that you put your used needles and syringes in a special sharps container. Do not put them in a trash can. If you do not have a sharps container, call your pharmacist or care team to get one.
This medication comes with INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE. Ask your pharmacist for directions on how to use this medication. Read the information carefully. Talk to your pharmacist or care team if you have questions.
A special MedGuide will be given to you before each treatment or by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.
Talk to your care team regarding the use of this medication in children. While it may be prescribed for children as young as 6 years 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.
What if I miss a dose?
If you get this medication at the hospital or clinic: It is important not to miss your dose. Call your care team if you are unable to keep an appointment.
If you give yourself this medication at home: If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. Then continue your normal schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses. Call your care team with questions.
What may interact with this medication?
Interactions are not expected.
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.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Your condition will be monitored carefully while you are receiving this medication. Your care team will determine how long you will be observed after each injection. You may need blood work done while you are taking this medication.
Improvement of your condition will not be immediate. Improvements will occur gradually. Do not stop taking any of your other treatments unless otherwise directed by your care team.
Some people who are at a high risk for parasite (worm) infections, get a parasite infection after receiving this medication. Your care team can test your stool to check for this type of infection if you are at risk.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
- Allergic reactions or angioedema—skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue, arms, or legs, trouble swallowing or breathing
- Rash, fever, and swollen lymph nodes
- Unusual weakness or fatigue, fever, headache, skin rash, muscle or joint pain, loss of appetite, pain, tingling, or numbness in the hands or feet
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
- Joint pain
- Pain, redness, or irritation at injection site
- Runny or stuffy nose
- Sore throat
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.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children and pets.
Store in the refrigerator. Do not freeze. Keep this medication in the original container until you are ready to take it. Protect from light. Get rid of any unused medication after the expiration date.
To get rid of medications that are no longer needed or have expired:
- Take the medication to a medication take-back program. Check with your pharmacy or law enforcement to find a location.
- If you cannot return the medication, ask your pharmacist or care team how to get rid of this medication safely.
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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