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Mecasermin Side Effects

In Summary

Commonly reported side effects of mecasermin include: tonsil disease. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

For the Consumer

Applies to mecasermin: subcutaneous solution

Along with its needed effects, mecasermin may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking mecasermin:

More common
  • Anxiety
  • bluish skin color of the fingertips
  • blurred vision
  • breathlessness
  • chest pain
  • chills
  • cold sweats
  • coma
  • confusion
  • cool, pale skin
  • depression
  • dizziness
  • fast heartbeat
  • headache
  • increased hunger
  • loss of hearing
  • nausea
  • nervousness
  • nightmares
  • rapid growth of normal cells of the thymus (no symptoms)
  • seizures
  • shakiness
  • slurred speech
  • thickening of the skin
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
Incidence not known
  • Change in the ability to see colors, especially blue or yellow
  • cough
  • difficult or labored breathing
  • difficulty with swallowing
  • hives or welts
  • itching
  • itching or hives at the injection site
  • large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  • limp
  • pain in the hip or knee
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • redness of the skin
  • shortness of breath
  • skin rash
  • tightness in the chest
  • vomiting
  • wheezing

Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur while taking mecasermin:

Symptoms of overdose

Some side effects of mecasermin may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common
  • Abnormal response of the tympanic membrane to air pressure
  • difficulty with moving
  • difficulty with swallowing
  • ear pain
  • earache
  • large, flat, blue or purplish patches in the skin
  • muffled hearing
  • muscle pain or stiffness
  • redness or swelling in the ear
  • sense of fullness in the ear
  • snoring
  • sore throat
  • voice changing

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to mecasermin: subcutaneous solution


The most common adverse events were hypoglycemia, injection site hypertrophy, snoring, hypoacusis, headache, and tonsillar hypertrophy.[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Hypoglycemia (47%)
Common (1% to 10%): Hypoglycemic seizure, hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia, obesity, increased weight[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Injection site hypertrophy (32%)
Common (1% to 10%): Injection site pain, injection site bruising, injection site fibrosis, injection site reaction, injection site swelling, injection site induration, injection site pigmentation changes
Postmarketing reports: Pruritus, urticaria, injection site reactions (e.g. erythema, pain, hematoma, hemorrhage, induration, rash, swelling)[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Hypoacusis (20%), febrile infection, otitis media, serous otitis media, chronic otitis media serous, otitis externa, ear infection
Common (1% to 10%): Fluid in middle ear, ear pain, abnormal tympanometry, ear tube insertion, otorrhea, ear disorder, middle ear disorder, tympanic membrane disorder, ear congestion, Mucosal membrane hyperplasia, hypertrophy, mucosal edema, asthenia, chest discomfort, abnormal tympanometry, adenotonsillectomy, adenoidectomy, ear tube insertion
Frequency not reported: Elevations in cholesterol, elevations in triglycerides[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Snoring (22%), tonsillar hypertrophy (16%), upper respiratory tract infection, pharyngitis, tonsillitis
Common (1% to 10%): Tonsillectomy/adenoidectomy, obstructive sleep apnea, adenoidal hypertrophy, nasal turbinate hypertrophy, dyspnea, nasal mucosal disorder, obstructive airway disorder, abnormal respiration, nasal congestion, mouth breathing[Ref]

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (18%)
Common (1% to 10%): Intracranial hypertension, dizziness, convulsions, febrile convulsion, benign intracranial hypertension, loss of consciousness, sleep apnea syndrome, dizziness, tremor, restless leg syndrome, lethargy[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Anti-IGF-1 antibodies (up to 61%), thymus hypertrophy[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Cardiac murmur, cardiomegaly, ventricular hypertrophy, atrial hypertrophy, tachycardia, tachycardia paroxysmal, mitral valve incompetence, tricuspid valve incompetence, abnormal echocardiogram
Frequency not reported: Cardiomegaly/valvulopathy[Ref]


Tonsillar hypertrophy appears to occur more frequently in the first 1 to 2 years of therapy with lesser tonsillar growth in subsequent years.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Oral candidiasis
Common (1% to 10%): Vomiting, retching, abdominal pain, upper abdominal pain, abdominal distension, dysphagia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Lipohypertrophy, bruising, skin hypertrophy, acrochordons, abnormal hair texture, pigmented nevus
Frequency not reported: Thickening of the soft tissues of the face
Postmarketing reports: Alopecia, hair texture abnormal[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Increased alanine aminotransferase, increased aspartate aminotransferase
Frequency not reported: Elevated AST, elevated LDH, elevated ALT[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Local and/or systemic hypersensitivity
Postmarketing reports: Anaphylaxis, local allergic reactions, generalized urticaria, angioedema, dyspnea[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Lymphadenopathy[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Arthralgia, pain in extremity, myalgia, scoliosis, spinal deformity, soft tissue disorder, muscle cramp, flank pain, musculoskeletal stiffness, congenital jaw malformation
Postmarketing reports: Osteonecrosis/avascular necrosis (occasionally associated with slipped capital femoral epiphysis)[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Nephrolithiasis, hydronephrosis, renal colic
Frequency not reported: Renal and splenic length increased rapidly[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Papilledema, reduced visual acuity, myopia[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Gynecomastia, ovarian cyst[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Depression, sleep terror, nervousness, abnormal behavior, disorientation[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Increlex (mecasermin)." Tercica Inc, Brisbane, CA.

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

Some side effects of mecasermin may not be reported. Always consult your doctor or healthcare specialist for medical advice. You may also report side effects to the FDA.

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