Anakinra is administered by a shot under the skin
(subcutaneous injection), usually once a day.
Anakinra limits the action of an
inflammatory substance known as interleukin (IL-1) that attaches to the joint
surface and promotes inflammation. Anakinra is a disease-modifying
antirheumatic drug (DMARD), which means it slows the progression of
rheumatoid arthritis. DMARDs are also called
immunosuppressive drugs or slow-acting antirheumatic drugs (SAARDs).
Anakinra has been approved for use in
adults with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis if at least one other DMARD
is not effective.
Anakinra shows moderately good
results in improving symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis when taken alone and when
taken in combination with methotrexate.1
Side effects of anakinra may
Rare cases of serious infections have been reported during
treatment with anakinra. Because anakinra decreases the action of your body's
natural immune system, fever and chills are considered serious side effects
that should be reported to your doctor immediately. If you develop
any infection, you should contact your doctor, who may advise that you
temporarily discontinue use of anakinra.
See Drug Reference for a
full list of side effects. (Drug Reference is not available in all
Talk to your doctor
before taking anakinra if you are breast-feeding, pregnant, or thinking about
Anakinra can be self-administered once you have
received training and instructions from your doctor.
Anakinra is a relatively new medicine, so its long-term side effects are
not yet known.
Complete the new medication information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you understand this medication.
CitationsDrugs for rheumatoid arthritis (2009). Treatment Guidelines From The Medical Letter, 7(81): 37–46.
June 11, 2010
Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Stanford M. Shoor, MD - Rheumatology
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