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Simulect Side Effects

Generic name: basiliximab

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 14, 2023.

Note: This document contains side effect information about basiliximab. Some dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Simulect.

Applies to basiliximab: intravenous powder for solution.


Intravenous route (Powder for Solution)

Only physicians experienced in immunosuppression therapy and management of organ transplantation patients should prescribe basiliximab. The physician responsible for basiliximab administration should have complete information requisite for the follow-up of the patient. Patients receiving the drug should be managed in facilities equipped and staffed with adequate laboratory and supportive medical resources.

Serious side effects of Simulect

Along with its needed effects, basiliximab (the active ingredient contained in Simulect) 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 as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur while taking basiliximab:

More common

  • Abdominal pain
  • back pain
  • coughing
  • dizziness
  • fever or chills
  • loss of energy or weakness
  • painful urination
  • shortness of breath
  • sore throat
  • swelling of the ankles, body, face, feet or lower legs
  • trembling or shaking of the hands or feet
  • vomiting
  • white patches in the mouth or throat or on the tongue

Less common

  • Abnormal vision
  • agitation
  • anxiety
  • bleeding, tender, or enlarged gums
  • blood in the stool
  • bruising
  • chest pain
  • depression
  • difficulty in urinating
  • fatigue
  • itching
  • numbness or pain in the legs
  • skin rash
  • sores in the mouth
  • “stocking and gloves” sensation of the hands or feet
  • tingling

Other side effects of Simulect

Some side effects of basiliximab 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

Less common

  • Excessive hair growth
  • joint pain
  • muscle pain

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to basiliximab: intravenous powder for injection.


Very common (10% or more): Peripheral edema (29%), hypertension (27%), general edema (21%)

Common (1% to 10%): Chest pain, face edema, leg edema, abnormal heart sounds, angina pectoris, cardiac failure, hypotension, arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation, tachycardia

Postmarketing reports: Capillary leak syndrome[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Anemia (26%)

Common (1% to 10%): Hematoma, hemorrhage, purpura, thrombocytopenia, thrombosis, polycythemia, leukopenia


Postmarketing reports: Severe acute hypersensitivity reactions (including anaphylaxis)


Very common (10% or more): Infection, sepsis

Postmarketing reports: Cytokine release syndrome


Common (1% to 10%): Arthralgia, arthropathy, back pain, bone fracture, cramps, hernia, myalgia, leg pain


Common (1% to 10%): Cataract, conjunctivitis, abnormal vision


Very common (10% or more): Hyperkalemia (22%), hypercholesterolemia (11%), hypokalemia, hyperglycemia, hypophosphatemia, hyperuricemia

Common (1% to 10%): Acidosis, dehydration, diabetes mellitus, fluid overload, hyperlipidemia, hypertriglyceridemia, hypocalcemia, hypoglycemia, hypomagnesemia, hypoproteinemia, weight increase


Very common (10% or more): Insomnia (24%)

Common (1% to 10%): Agitation, anxiety, depression


Very common (10% or more): Urinary tract infection (46%)

Common (1% to 10%): Unspecified bladder disorders, genital edema, impotence, ureteral disorder, urinary retention, oliguria


Very common (10% or more): Upper respiratory tract infection (20%), rhinitis, dyspnea

Common (1% to 10%): Bronchitis, bronchospasm, abnormal chest sounds, coughing, pharyngitis, pneumonia, pulmonary disorder, pulmonary edema, rhinitis, sinusitis

Postmarketing reports: Respiratory failure


Very common (10% or more): Pain (42%), fever (20%)

Common (1% to 10%): Asthenia, malaise

Nervous system

Very common (10% or more): Headache (24%), tremor (19%)

Common (1% to 10%): Rigors, dizziness, neuropathy, paresthesia, hypoesthesia


Common (1% to 10%): Albuminuria, bladder disorder, dysuria, frequent micturition, hematuria, increased non-protein nitrogen, abnormal renal function, renal tubular necrosis


Very common (10% or more): Hypertrichosis, surgical wound complication, acne

Common (1% to 10%): Cyst, herpes simplex, herpes zoster, hypertrichosis, pruritus, rash, skin disorder, skin ulceration


Common (1% to 10%): Increased glucocorticoids


Very common (10% or more): Constipation (48%), nausea (34%), abdominal pain (21%), diarrhea (21%), vomiting (20%), dyspepsia

Common (1% to 10%): Enlarged abdomen, esophagitis, flatulence, GI disorder, gastroenteritis, GI hemorrhage, gum hyperplasia, melena, moniliasis, ulcerative stomatitis


1. "Product Information. Simulect (basiliximab)." Novartis Pharmaceuticals (2001):

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

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

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.