Raptiva (efalizumab)

February 19, 2009

Audience: Dermatological healthcare professionals, patients

[Posted 02/19/2009] FDA issued a Public Health Advisory to notify healthcare professionals of three confirmed, and one possible report of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), a rare brain infection, in patients using the psoriasis drug Raptiva. In October 2008, the labeling for Raptiva was changed to highlight, in a Boxed Warning, the risks of life-threatening infections, including PML. In addition, FDA directed Genentech, the manufacturer of Raptiva, to develop a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy, or REMS, to ensure that patients receive risk information about Raptiva. The FDA is reviewing this latest information. The agency will take appropriate steps to ensure that the risks of Raptiva do not outweigh its benefits, that patients prescribed Raptiva are clearly informed of the signs and symptoms of PML, and that health care professionals carefully monitor patients for the possible development of PML. The Public Health Advisory provides recommendations for healthcare providers and patients when treatment with this product is considered.

[February 19, 2009 - Public Health Advisory - FDA]
[February 19, 2009 - News Release - FDA]

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