Rituximab may rarely cause serious (sometimes fatal) side effects including severe breathing problems or heart problems (such as heart attack, irregular heartbeat). If these serious side effects occur, they usually happen during the first treatment with rituximab. Your doctor will carefully watch you during treatment and may stop or slow down your treatment if you have any signs of a reaction. Get medical help right away if you have trouble breathing, itching, swelling (especially of the throat/lips), dizziness, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, or chest pain.
Rarely, people using this medication have had serious (sometimes fatal) skin reactions (such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome). Get medical help right away if you develop any rash, blisters, peeling skin, or sores on your skin, lips, or in your mouth.
This medication may increase your risk of getting a rare but very serious (possibly fatal) brain infection (progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy-PML). Get medical help right away if you have any of these side effects: clumsiness, loss of coordination/balance, weakness, sudden change in your thinking (such as confusion, difficulty concentrating, memory loss), difficulty talking/walking, seizure, vision changes.
Rituximab may cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease in people who have a current or past infection with hepatitis B. This may occur during treatment or up to 2 years after treatment is finished. Before starting this medication, tell your doctor if you have ever had hepatitis B. Your doctor should order a test to see if you have the hepatitis B infection before starting treatment. Tell your doctor right away if you have symptoms of liver disease, such as nausea/vomiting that doesn't stop, loss of appetite, stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin, or dark urine.
Rituximab is used to treat certain types of cancer (such as non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia). It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells.Some brands of rituximab are also used to treat rheumatoid arthritis and can decrease joint pain and swelling. This drug is also used to treat certain types of blood vessel disease (such as granulomatosis with polyangiitis, microscopic polyangiitis) and can decrease the swelling of the blood vessels. Rituximab is also used to treat a certain skin condition (pemphigus vulgaris). It helps to reduce the number of skin lesions.This monograph is about the following rituximab products: rituximab, rituximab-abbs, rituximab-arrx, and rituximab-pvvr.
How to use Rituximab Concentrate
Your doctor should prescribe other medications (such as acetaminophen, an antihistamine, methylprednisolone) for you to take before each treatment to help reduce side effects, such as fever and chills. Carefully follow your doctor's instructions.
This medication is given by slow injection into a vein by a health care professional as directed by your doctor. The dosage and treatment schedule are based on your medical condition, body size, and response to treatment.
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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.