› In studies, people with RA (rheumatoid arthritis) taking methotrexate had improved symptoms when Cimzia (Certolizumab) was added to methotrexate.
› Cimzia (Certolizumab) is as effective as other similar medicines for Crohn's disease. It can be an option for people taking other RA medications that have too many side effects of don't work anymore.
› Cimzia (Certolizumab) lasts longer in the body than other RA medications, letting it work longer.
› Available in a prefilled syringe. This can make it easier to give yourself the injection.
Downsides and risks
› Can lower your immune system's ability to fight infections. You can get serious infections such as TB (tuberculosis) and infections caused by viruses, fungi, or bacteria.
› Can have a higher risk for causing bladder infections, rash, and upper respiratory infections (cold or flu) compared to other similar medicines.
› Cimzia (Certolizumab) can increase the risk of lymphoma, leukemia, and other cancers.
› Requires routine tests to check for infections.
› Not a good choice if you have a history of heart failure, nervous system problems, or hepatitis B.
› There's no generic available and it can be very expensive.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
› Cimzia (Certolizumab) is a medicine that's injected just under the skin (subcutaneous). It can be given in your doctor's office or you can do it yourself at home.
› It can take multiple doses before you start to see any effects, so don't change your dose without talking to your doctor.
› Tell your doctor if you have night sweats, persistent fever, fatigue, weight loss, or swollen lymph nodes.
› You'll need to have a TB (tuberculosis) test before you start Cimzia (Certolizumab) and periodically during treatment.
› Don't get any live vaccines while you're taking Cimzia (Certolizumab) since they may not work as well. Wait at least 3 months after you've stopped taking Cimzia (Certolizumab) before getting a live vaccine.