You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to infliximab or murine (mouse) proteins. In some cases, you should not receive this medicine if you have a history of heart failure.
Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given through a needle placed in one of your veins.
A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Ask your pharmacist for the Medication Guide if you do not have one. Your doctor might ask you to sign some forms to show that you understand this information.
This medicine needs to be given slowly. The needle will need to remain in place for at least 2 hours.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
Make sure your doctor knows if you are using anakinra (Kineret®), azathioprine (Imuran®), etanercept (Enbrel®), or methotrexate (Folex®, Rheumatrex®). Tell your doctor if you have received infliximab before. Make sure your doctor knows about all other medicines you are using, including nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines and herbal products.
Talk to your doctor before getting flu shots or other vaccines while you are receiving this medicine. Vaccines may not work as well, or they could make you ill while you are using this medicine.
Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have liver disease, kidney disease, heart problems, bleeding disorder, any type of infection or an infection that would not go away or keeps coming back, diabetes, a weakened immune system, or if you have ever been treated with medicines that weaken your immune system (such as steroids or cancer medicines). Tell your doctor if you have a history of seizures, multiple sclerosis, Guillain-Barre syndrome, or a similar nervous system disease. Make sure your doctor knows if you have lung disease (such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD), a history of cancer, hepatitis B infection, psoriasis, or if you have recently received a vaccine.
Serious skin reactions can occur during treatment with this medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms while taking this medicine: blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin; chills; cough; diarrhea; fever; itching; joint or muscle pain; red skin lesions; sore throat; sores, ulcers, or white spots in your mouth or lips; or unusual tiredness or weakness.
You will need to have a skin test for tuberculosis before you start using this medicine. Tell your doctor if you or anyone in your home has ever had a positive reaction to a tuberculosis test.
A small number of people (including children and teenagers) who have used this medicine have developed certain types of cancer. This is more common among patients who have lung diseases or are heavy smokers, and in psoriasis patients who have had phototherapy treatment for a long time. Some patients with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis also developed a rare type of cancer called lymphoma. Talk with your doctor if you have unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness; swollen lymph nodes in the neck, underarms, or groin; or unexplained weight loss. Also, check with your doctor right away if your skin has red, scaly patches, or raised bumps that are filled with pus.
This medicine lowers the number of some types of blood cells in your body. Because of this, you may bleed or get infections more easily. To help with these problems, avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Wash your hands often. Stay away from rough sports or other situations where you could be bruised, cut, or injured. Brush and floss your teeth gently. Be careful when using sharp objects, including razors and fingernail clippers.
Call your doctor right away if you start to have signs of infection such as persistent cough, fever, chills, weight loss, night sweats, shortness of breath, unusual tiredness or weakness, or flu-like symptoms such as a runny or stuffy nose, headache, or feeling generally ill. Tell your doctor if you have been exposed to chickenpox or any other virus.
Your risk of getting an infection increases when you travel to places where certain organisms (such as fungi, bacteria, viruses, or parasites) are more common. Tell your doctor where you live and if you have any history of travel if you start to have any sign of infection.
Do not change or stop using this medicine without checking with your doctor first. Your doctor may want you to gradually reduce the amount you are using before stopping it completely.
If your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse, call your doctor.
Your doctor will need to check your blood at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.