Generic Name: Omalizumab (oh mah lye ZOO mab)
Brand Name: Xolair
Medically reviewed on September 5, 2018
- Allergic reactions have happened up to 4 days after omalizumab was given. Sometimes, these allergic reactions have been life-threatening. This has happened as early as after the first dose. It has also happened after a year of care. You will be watched closely after you get this drug. Tell your doctor right away about any anxiety, chest or throat tightness, cough, dizziness, fast or weak heartbeat, feeling warm, flushing, hives, hoarse voice, itching, passing out, rash, shortness of breath, swelling of the throat or tongue, trouble breathing or swallowing, wheezing, or any other bad effects.
Uses of Omalizumab:
- It is used to treat asthma.
- It is used to treat hives.
- Do not use omalizumab to treat an asthma attack. Use a rescue inhaler. Talk with your doctor.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Omalizumab?
- If you have an allergy to omalizumab or any other part of omalizumab.
- If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
This medicine may interact with other drugs or health problems.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take omalizumab with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Omalizumab?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take omalizumab. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- This medicine may add to the chance of getting some types of cancer. Talk with the doctor.
- Some people at high risk for parasite infections have gotten a parasite infection after taking omalizumab. Your doctor may test your stool to see if you have a parasite infection. Talk with your doctor.
- Allergic reactions have happened with omalizumab. The chance of an allergic reaction is higher in people who have had an allergic reaction to foods, other drugs, or other substances. Talk with the doctor.
- It may take a few months to see the full effect.
- If you are switching to omalizumab from a steroid, do not stop taking the steroid all of a sudden. The dose of the steroid may need to be slowly lowered to avoid side effects. Talk with the doctor.
- Some people using omalizumab get fever; joint pain, stiffness, or swelling; muscle pain; swollen glands; or rash. This has happened within 1 to 5 days after getting omalizumab. Call your doctor right away if you have any of these signs.
- If you are taking omalizumab for asthma, check your weight weekly. Report a weight change to your doctor.
- Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
- This medicine may affect certain lab tests. Tell all of your health care providers and lab workers that you take omalizumab.
- Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines. Use with omalizumab may either raise the chance of an infection or make the vaccine not work as well.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using omalizumab while you are pregnant.
- Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.
How is this medicine (Omalizumab) best taken?
Use omalizumab as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- It is given as a shot into the fatty part of the skin.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Call your doctor to find out what to do.
See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of infection like fever, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, or wound that will not heal.
- A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
- Bone pain.
- Trouble breathing that is new or worse.
- Very bad irritation where the shot was given.
- Some people taking omalizumab have had chest pain, heart attacks, transient ischemic attacks (TIAs), or blood clots. It is not known if this drug caused these problems. Call your doctor if you have chest, jaw, or arm pain or pressure; passing out; shortness of breath; swelling, warmth, numbness, change of color, or pain in a leg or arm; or coughing up blood. Call your doctor if you have a change in strength on 1 side is greater than the other, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, or blurred eyesight.
What are some other side effects of Omalizumab?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
For all patients taking omalizumab:
- Upset stomach.
- Irritation where the shot is given.
- Feeling tired or weak.
- Nose and throat irritation.
- Signs of a common cold.
- Stomach pain.
- Throwing up.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Omalizumab?
- If you need to store omalizumab at home, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.
Consumer information use
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
- Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time omalizumab is refilled. If you have any questions about omalizumab, please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
More about omalizumab
- Omalizumab Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Interactions
- Support Group
- En Español
- 141 Reviews
- Drug class: other immunosuppressants
Other brands: Xolair