Ocrelizumab is a prescriptionused to treat:
This type of condition affectsthe brain and spinal cord. In which it occurs when your immune system starts toattack the myelin that coats and protects your nerve fibers. The symptomsdiffer for everyone, depending on the area and extent of the nerve damage. Somesymptoms may include:
- Vision problems
- Muscle spasms
- Difficulty moving or walking
People with all forms of MS experience disease activity. It is the inflammation in the nervous system and permanent loss of nerve cells in the brain, spinal cord, or optic nerves. Disease activity causes lesions in the brain. In which it can be measured with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Most people with these conditions continue to experience disease activity and worsening disability. An important goal of treating the illness is to slow the progression of disability.
For some, symptoms deteriorateover time, while for others they come and go in periods of relapse andremission. This medication is not a cure for these conditions, but it isthought to help slow down nerve damage. This may as well reduce the number ofrelapses and may delay the disability.
Ocrelizumab is a recombinant humanized monoclonal antibody directed against CD20-expressing B-cells. This is a glycosylated immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1). Engagement of CD20 causes cell lysis resulting in B cell depletion. In which it may be beneficial in auto-immune conditions mediated by autoantibodies. B cells or also known as B lymphocytes are a type of white blood cell subtype. They function in the humoral immunity component of the adaptive immune system by secreting antibodies. This prescription was approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2017. This product is supplied in single-dose vials. This is a preservative-free, sterile, clear or slightly opalescent, and colorless to a pale brown solution. Each mL of solution contains 30 mg of Ocrelizumab.
How does Ocrelizumab work?
Ocrelizumab is a monoclonalantibody. In which it is a type of drug developed to attack specific targets inthe immune system. It has been designed to target a particular marker (CD20) onthe surface of B cells.
Your immune system makes special cells that attack and kill viruses and bacteria. In RRMS and PPMS, these cells attack your nerves by mistake. This drug sticks to one type of these cells called B cells and helps kill them. This stops them from getting into your brain and spinal cord. Wherein, they would attack the myelin covering around your nerves. This stops inflammation and damage to the nerve.
This medication may also work inRRMS by:
- Slowing disability progression
- Reducing the annual relapse rate
- Lessening inflammation
- Reducing the size of new and existing brainlesions
For PPMS, the drug works by:
- Slowing disability progression
- Reducing the risk of declining walking speed
- Lessening the size of new and existing brainlesions
- Reducing loss of brain volume
How to use Ocrelizumab?
The prescribed dosage for thismedication is based on your medical condition, age, weight, and response to it.For the best benefit from this product, take it regularly. You must take thismedication exactly as it is prescribed. It may cause another complication ormay worsen your current condition.
Ocrelizumab is given by injectioninto a vein by a doctor or healthcare professional. It is given on a treatmentschedule. The recommended dose is usually 600 mg intravenously every 6 months. Theinitial dose is given as two separate infusions of 300 mg 2 weeks apart. Followyour doctor’s treatment schedule very carefully.
Your doctor will monitor youclosely during your infusion and for at least an hour afterward. Your infusionmay be slowed down or stopped depending on your symptoms. You may also be givenadditional medication. It is to help reduce the severity of an infusionreaction. Those are given before each treatment such as:
- An antihistamine
If you missed a dose, let yourdoctor know for instructions. Inform your doctor if your condition gets worseor does not improve.
What are the side effects of Ocrelizumab?
Here are some lists of possibleside effects that may occur while taking this drug:
- Back pain
- Pain in the extremities
- Skin infections
- Lower respiratory tract infections
- Upper respiratory tract infections
If these side effects continue orget worse, call your doctor immediately.
You may also experience an infusionreaction such as:
- Swollen and sore throat
- Mouth pain
- Shortness of breath
If you get infusion reactions,your doctor may need to stop or slow down the rate of your infusion.
Warnings and Precautions
- This medication should not be used by pregnant,planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding women.
- Tell your doctor if you are allergic to it. Thisdrug may contain an inactive ingredient that causes an allergic reaction. Getemergency medical help if an allergic reaction occurs.
- Let your healthcare provider know about all themedicines you take including prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbalsupplements.
- Without the consent of your doctor, you should notreceive any vaccination or immunization.
- Before using this medication, inform your doctorif have ever taken drugs that affect your immune system. Tell as well if youhave ever had hepatitis B or are a carrier of the hepatitis B virus.
- You should not share this or any of yourprescriptions with others even if they have the same symptoms as yours.
- Ocrelizumab affects your immune system. You mayget infections more easily, even serious or fatal infections. Call your doctorimmediately if you have a cough, fever, chills, and problems with speech,vision, thoughts, or muscle movement.
- Do not receive any live or live-attenuated vaccinewithin the 4 weeks before you start treatment with Ocrelizumab. If you need anon-live vaccine, you should receive it at least 2 weeks before you starttreatment with Ocrelizumab.
- Keep this drug at room temperature far from heat,moisture, and from the reach of children.