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Fingolimod Side Effects

Medically reviewed by Philip Thornton, DipPharm. Last updated on Apr 27, 2022.


Commonly reported side effects of fingolimod include: infection, back pain, diarrhea, increased serum alanine aminotransferase, increased serum aspartate aminotransferase, and increased liver enzymes. Other side effects include: blurred vision, bradycardia, bronchitis, increased gamma-glutamyl transferase, lymphocytopenia, migraine, dizziness, dyspnea, hypertension, increased serum transaminases, and tinea. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

For the Consumer

Applies to fingolimod: oral capsules

Side effects include:

Most common adverse reactions (≥10%) include headache, elevations in serum transaminase concentrations, diarrhea, cough, influenza, sinusitis, back pain, abdominal pain, and pain in extremity.

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to fingolimod: oral capsule


The most common adverse events were headache, influenza, diarrhea, back pain, liver transaminase elevations, and cough.[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Hypertension, first degree AV block, bradycardia

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Symptomatic bradycardia, second degree AV block

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Peripheral arterial occlusive disease

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Hemophagocytic syndrome

Frequency not reported: Heart rate decrease, Mobitz type I (Wenckebach) block, Mobitz type II block

Postmarketing reports: Third degree AV block, AV block with junctional escape, transient asystole, peripheral arterial occlusive disease[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): ALT/AST increased (14%)

Common (1% to 10%): Elevation in liver transaminases, GGT increased, hepatic enzyme increased, liver function test abnormal[Ref]

In the majority of cases, elevations in liver enzymes occurred within 6 to 9 months and returned to normal within approximately 2 months following discontinuation of fingolimod.[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Influenza viral infection (13%), sinusitis (10.9%), infections

Common (1% to 10%): Herpes viral infection, bronchitis, gastroenteritis, tinea infection

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Pneumonia

Frequency not reported: Fatal herpetic infection, fatal varicella zoster virus infection[Ref]

Infections occurred at a rate similar to placebo.[Ref]

Nervous system

Symptoms of posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome included sudden onset of severe headache, altered mental status, visual disturbances, and seizure.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Headache (25%)

Common (1% to 10%): Dizziness, paresthesia, migraine

Rare (less than 0.1%): Posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome, ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke

Frequency not reported: Neurological atypical disorders

Postmarketing reports: Syncope[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Diarrhea (12%)[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Lymphopenia, leukopenia

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Neutrophil count decreased[Ref]


Macular edema occurred at a dramatically higher rate in patients with a history of uveitis.[Ref]

Common (1% to 10%): Vision blurred, eye pain

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Macular edema[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Cough (10%)

Common (1% to 10%): Dyspnea, reduction in diffusion lung capacity, reduction in FEV1[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Back pain (12%)[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Alopecia, eczema, pruritus[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Weight decreased, blood triglycerides increased[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Asthenia

Postmarketing reports: Unexplained death[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Depression

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Depressed mood[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Lymphoma[Ref]


Postmarketing reports: Rash, urticaria, angioedema

Frequently asked questions


1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

2. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

3. "Product Information. Gilenya (fingolimod)." Novartis Pharmaceuticals (2010):

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.