Velaglucerase is used to treat a certain rare genetic problem (Gaucher disease). Velaglucerase replaces a certain natural substance (an enzyme called glucocerebrosidase) that is missing in people with Gaucher disease.
This medication improves blood, bone, liver, and spleen problems caused by Gaucher disease. Velaglucerase does not correct the genetic problem, and treatment must be continued for life.
This medication is given slowly, usually over 1 hour, into a vein as directed by your doctor, usually every 2 weeks. Your dose and how often it is given depends on your weight, medical condition, and response to treatment.
If you are giving this medication to yourself at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. Do not shake the solution. It may contain a few white particles. Before using, check this product visually for other particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely.
Velaglucerase may rarely cause side effects (such as headache, dizziness, fainting, weakness/tiredness, nausea, high fever) while it is being given. Your doctor may decide to temporarily stop or slow down the medication infusion if this happens. Tell your healthcare professional right away if you have any of these symptoms during your treatment. Your doctor may direct you to take other medications (such as antihistamines, drugs for fever, or corticosteroids such as prednisone) before your treatment to prevent these reactions from happening again.
Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens. Blood, liver, and spleen problems usually improve in the first year of treatment. It may take 2 to 3 years of treatment to see the full benefit to your bones.
Fever, headache, nausea, dizziness, abdominal pain, back/joint pain, weakness, tiredness, or redness/pain/itching/swelling at the injection site may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before using velaglucerase, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to alglucerase; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
It is unknown if this medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
The effects of some drugs can change if you take other drugs or herbal products at the same time. This can increase your risk for serious side effects or may cause your medications not to work correctly. These drug interactions are possible, but do not always occur. Your doctor or pharmacist can often prevent or manage interactions by changing how you use your medications or by close monitoring.
To help your doctor and pharmacist give you the best care, be sure to tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) before starting treatment with this product. While using this product, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any other medicines you are using without your doctor's approval.
Keep a list of all the products you use. Share the list with your doctor and pharmacist to reduce your risk for serious medication problems.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as IgG antibodies) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
For the best possible benefit, it is important to receive each scheduled dose of this medication as directed. If you miss a dose, contact your doctor to establish a new dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store in the refrigerator. Protect from light and freezing. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised May 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
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