Generic Name(s): ofatumumab (OH fa TOO mue mab)
Drug Class: CD20 monoclonal antibodies
Treats: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia.
Arzerra is a monoclonal antibody that affects the body’s immune system. In a nut shell, Arzerra is a cancer treating medicinal syrup that contains the active substance ofatumumab. The purpose of such monoclonal drugs is to single out and destroy certain given cells in the body. Such actions provide protection to healthy cells from destruction.
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The main use of Arzerra is treating chronic lymphocytic leukemia, a type of cancer that affects and attacks white blood cells (lymphocytes). For previously untreated patients whom therapy cannot be prescribed to, this drug used together with chlorambucil or bendamustine can be prescribed for them based on fludarabine, another cancer medicine. Arzerra has also proved to have other uses that includes:
- Follicular non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma
- Relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis
For those patients who made no positive response to fludarabine, the drug can be used together with alemtuzumab to minimize side effects to the patient.
Arzerra should be given by or under a strict supervision of an experienced doctor in cancer treatment and availability of cancer treating equipment. It’s administered as an injection or infusion into the vein (intravenous, IV) over a period of 6 hours. The timed lap can be reduced depending on an individual’s history with the drug or how well one reacts to it. It is usually administered in a series of 12 doses. The prefered dosage is as follows:
- Adult:10 mg/m2 each day
- Children: Doctor to determine the correct usage
Patients are subjected to medications like antihistamines, paracetamols and corticosteroids before injections to prevent allergic reactions to the drug.
Arzerra Side Effects
As a common drug that affects the normal working condition of the body, Arzerra toohas it's side effects. It's advisable you let your physician know about your previours treatments. Listed below are some of the most common side effects that comes with Arzerra treatment.
- Fatigue that affects speech, walking, vision, change in mental stability.
- Cold symptoms like sneezing and sore throats.
- Low blood counts i.e. due to the decrease in cells like white blood cells, red blood cells, and the platelets.
- Itchy rashes.
Apart from the common side effects there also a number of rare ones that appear only to very few. They are;
- A group of reversible problems like changes in eyesight and behaviors, high blood pressure, headaches, and seizures.
- Breakdown of tumor cells that increases the uric acid in the blood.
- Fluctuations in blood pressure.
- Frequent muscle stretches.
It’s medically advisable to consult your doctor or physician about all your side effects before any consequential use of other drugs, for effective action to be taken promptly any further delay may be very harmful. Below are some of the drugs that have been checked as Arzerra combination.
- DiclofenacFish Oil (omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids)
- Flax Seed Oil (flax)Gabapentin
- Claritin-D (loratadine / pseudoephedrine)
- Gilenya (fingolimod)
- Fluticasone nasal
- Gelnique (oxybutynin)
Arzerra will most likely react with other drugs unless those medically prescribed. Always seek advice from your physician before using any other drug while on an Arzerra prescription. Also inform your doctor the drugs you have used before using Arzerra.