Ocrevus Dosage, forms & strengths
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Ocrevus (ocrelizumab) is a monoclonal antibody that is manufactured by Genentech, Inc. It is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat adults with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (RMS), including relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) and active secondary progressive disease. It is also indicated to treat primary progressive multiple sclerosis (PPMS) in adults.
What is Ocrevus’s mechanism of action?
Ocrevus is a type of disease-modifying therapy whose mechanism of action in treating MS is not fully understood. MS is a disease in which your immune system attacks the protective covering (myelin) of nerves. Ocrevus is believed to work by attaching to B-cells (lymphocytes) on your immune cells to help reduce brain and spinal cord lesions caused by different forms of MS.
Ocrevus dosage forms and strengths
- 300mg/10ml in a single-use vial for infusion
You will have hepatitis B virus and quantitative serum immunoglobulin screening prior to your first dose of Ocrevus. Before each infusion, you will be premedicated with a corticosteroid such as methylprednisolone and an antihistamine such as diphenhydramine to help reduce the risk of infusion reactions.
- Starting dose: 300mg intravenous infusion, followed by a second 300 mg intravenous infusion 2 weeks later
- Subsequent doses: 600mg intravenous infusion every 6 months
You should be monitored closely during and for at least 1 hour after the infusion.
Ocrevus dosage restrictions
Patients with mild liver and kidney impairment were included in clinical studies and it appears that no dose adjustments are necessary for these patients.
How to take Ocrevus
- Read the Full Prescribing Information, Drug Information, and Medication Guide with Ocrevus.
- You will receive Ocrevus via an IV infusion in your arm. Your healthcare provider will decide if it’s given in their office, clinic, infusion center, or at your home. You will receive premedications such as a corticosteroid (methylprednisolone) and an antihistamine (diphenhydramine) to help decrease the incidence of serious infusion reactions.
- Your first full dose of Ocrevus is given as 2 separate infusions, 2 weeks apart. Each infusion of Ocrevus will take around 2 hours and 30 minutes. After your first dose, you will then receive an infusion every 6 months. They can take between 2 hours to 3 hours and 30 minutes depending on how well you have tolerated this medication.
- If you miss a scheduled infusion of Ocrevus, reschedule it as soon as possible. Do not wait until your next scheduled dose. Once it is administered, reset your dosing schedule to give the next dose 6 months after the missed dose is given.
Ocrevus dosage FAQs
What are some adverse effects of Ocrevus?
Some common side effects of Ocrevus seen in clinical trials when compared to placebo include:
- Upper respiratory tract infection
- Lower respiratory tract infection
- Infusion-related reactions such as skin rash, fever, low blood pressure, trouble breathing, throat irritation, fatigue, or flushing
- Skin infections
- Herpes infections
Ocrevus can sometimes cause more serious side effects, including:
- Severe, life-threatening hypersensitivity reactions (hives, swelling of the face or throat, fast heartbeat, and shortness of breath)
- Increased risk of malignancy, including breast cancer
- Reactivation of hepatitis B virus (HBV)
- A rare, sometimes fatal brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML)
Contact your healthcare professional for medical advice about any adverse reactions you experience while taking Ocrevus. You can report your side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or www.fda.gov/medwatch.
What are some drug interactions with Ocrevus?
The concomitant use of Ocrevus with other drugs can affect how they work or increase the frequency and severity of side effects. You should ask your doctor if any of the prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements you take may interact with Ocrevus, including:
- Immune-modulating or immunosuppressive drugs
What are some contraindications of Ocrevus?
You should not use Ocrevus if you have a hypersensitivity to ocrelizumab or any inactive ingredients in this product. Ocrevus is also contraindicated in patients with an active infection and those with a history of life-threatening infusion reactions.
Is it safe to use Ocrevus while pregnant or breastfeeding?
It is not known if Ocrevus will cause harm to your unborn baby. You should use effective contraception during Ocrevus treatment and for 6 months after your last infusion. There is a pregnancy registry that monitors women who are exposed to Ocrevus while pregnant. You can enroll in this registry by calling 1-833-872-4370 or visiting www.ocrevuspregnancyregistry.com.
It is also not known if Ocrevus is found in breast milk during lactation. You should always discuss the risks and benefits of any medication with your healthcare provider if you are pregnant, plan on becoming pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
How long will your Ocrevus infusion take?
Your initial dose of Ocrevus will be given as 2 separate infusions that will last at least 2.5 hours. Patients without any prior serious infusion reactions with Ocrevus are eligible for a 2-hour rapid infusion rate for their remaining treatments. Patients who have had reactions will have an infusion time of 3.5 to 4 hours.
Will Ocrevus help improve your walking?
According to the manufacturer, the use of Ocrevus in patients with relapsing multiple sclerosis resulted in a 35% reduction in the need for a walking aid after 7 and a half years of treatment. It also showed a reduction in relapse rates and disability progression in patients with primary progressive MS.
How long does it take for Ocrevus to start working?
Ocrevus will slow the progression of MS within 12 weeks but it can take at least 6 months for you to receive its full benefits.
Does Ocrevus cause weight gain?
Weight gain is not a reported side effect of Ocrevus. It can cause edema (swelling) in your arms and legs which will cause you to gain weight.
Can you receive immunizations while on Ocrevus?
You should not receive vaccines while being treated with Ocrevus. You should have any non-live vaccines administered at least 2 weeks before starting this medication and any live or live-attenuated vaccines at least 4 weeks before beginning Ocrevus.
What is the average price of Ocrevus?
Ocrevus is an extremely expensive medication. The average cost of #2 x 10ml vials of Ocrevus 300mg/10ml is approximately $33,000.
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