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Canakinumab

Generic Name: canakinumab (KAN-a-KIN-ue-mab)
Brand Name: Ilaris

Canakinumab is used for:

Treating certain autoinflammatory diseases known as cryopyrin-associated periodic syndrome, including familial cold autoinflammatory syndrome (FCAS) and Muckle-Wells syndrome. Canakinumab is also used to treat systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Canakinumab is an interleukin-1 beta-blocker. It works by decreasing the activity of a protein called interleukin-1 beta, which may help to decrease inflammation.

Do NOT use canakinumab if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in canakinumab
  • you are using another interleukin-1 blocker (eg, anakinra, rilonacept), tocilizumab, tofacitinib, or a tumor necrosis factor (TNF) blocker (eg, adalimumab, etanercept, infliximab)
  • you will be receiving a live vaccine
  • you have a severe infection (eg, sepsis), HIV, hepatitis B or C, or any other active infection

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Slideshow: View Frightful (But Dead Serious) Drug Side Effects

Before using canakinumab:

Some medical conditions may interact with canakinumab. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances, including rubber
  • if you have a history of an infection that keeps coming back, a tuberculosis (TB) infection or positive TB skin test, hepatitis B infection, low white blood cell counts, low blood platelet levels, or cancer
  • if you have an autoimmune disorder (eg, lupus) or other immune system problems, have recently received a vaccine, are scheduled to receive a vaccine, or are scheduled to have surgery
  • if you have open cuts or sores on your body or flu-like symptoms or other signs of infection (eg, fever; chills; cough; warm, red, or painful skin), or if you are using medicine to treat an infection
  • if you have ever lived in or traveled to an area where TB is common, or if you have come into close contact with a person with active TB
  • if you take medicine that may decrease your immune system (eg, cyclosporine)

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with canakinumab. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Another interleukin-1 blocker (eg, anakinra, rilonacept), tocilizumab, tofacitinib, or a tumor necrosis factor (TNF) blocker (eg, adalimumab, etanercept, infliximab) because the risk of serious infection may be increased
  • Warfarin because the risk of its side effects may be increased by canakinumab

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if canakinumab may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use canakinumab:

Use canakinumab as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Canakinumab comes with an extra patient information sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it carefully. Read it again each time you get canakinumab refilled.
  • Canakinumab is given as an injection under the skin at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic.
  • If you miss a dose of canakinumab, contact your doctor right away.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use canakinumab.

Important safety information:

  • Canakinumab may cause dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use canakinumab with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Do NOT use more than the recommended dose or use for longer than prescribed without checking with your doctor.
  • If your symptoms do not get better or if they get worse, check with your doctor.
  • Canakinumab may lower the ability of your body to fight infection. Avoid contact with people who have colds or infections. Tell your doctor if you notice signs of infection like fever, sore throat, rash, or chills.
  • The safety of canakinumab in patients with inactive TB has not been confirmed. You may need to have a TB skin test before you start canakinumab to determine if you have TB infection. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
  • Medicines that suppress the immune system, including canakinumab, may increase the risk of developing certain types of cancer. Talk with your doctor if you have questions or concerns.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take canakinumab before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • It is recommended that your vaccines be up to date before you begin canakinumab. Check with your doctor if you have any questions.
  • Do not receive a live vaccine (eg, measles, mumps) while you are taking canakinumab. Talk with your doctor before you receive any vaccine.
  • Canakinumab should not be used in CHILDREN younger than 2 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using canakinumab while you are pregnant. It is not known if canakinumab is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use canakinumab, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of canakinumab:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Cold symptoms; diarrhea; dizziness; headache; mild redness, swelling, warmth, or itching at the injection site; mild sore throat; nausea; runny nose; stomach pain; vomiting; weight gain.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing or swallowing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); coughing up blood; fainting; open sore that does not heal; persistent cough; persistent pain, swelling, or redness at the injection site; severe or persistent headache or dizziness; severe or persistent diarrhea or stomach pain; shortness of breath; signs of infection (eg, fever, sweats or chills, cough, flu symptoms; persistent sore throat; warm, red, or painful skin; increased or painful urination); sudden, unusual weight changes; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual lumps; unusual tiredness or weakness.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of canakinumab:

Canakinumab is usually handled and stored by a health care provider. If you are using canakinumab at home, store canakinumab as directed by your pharmacist or health care provider. Keep canakinumab out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about canakinumab, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Canakinumab is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take canakinumab or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about canakinumab. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to canakinumab. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using canakinumab.

Issue Date: July 2, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.001
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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