Compare Copaxone vs. Gilenya

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Copaxone (Glatiramer)

Prescription only

Gilenya (Fingolimod)

Prescription only
Lowers the frequency of multiple sclerosis exacerbations.

Copaxone (Glatiramer) is an injectable medicine that's effective for relapsing, remitting MS. It has fewer side effects than other meds, but the self-injections are needed frequently.

3.2/ 5 average rating with 30 reviewsforCopaxone
Treats relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis.

Gilenya (Fingolimod) is an oral medication that has a lot of side effects, but it reduces the number of flare-ups, slows physical changes, and decreases the number of new brain lesions in relapsing MS.

3.0/ 5 average rating with 57 reviewsforGilenya
Upsides
  • One of the main treatments for relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS) that has been around for many years.
  • Helps reduce the frequency of MS relapse episodes.
  • Fewer side effects than other injectable MS medicines, like interferons.
  • Can be helpful in maintaining nerve functions.
  • Likely safe to use during pregnancy.
  • Copaxone (Glatiramer) is a possible treatment for primary-progressive MS (PPMS) even though the clinical evidence is not conclusive (there are currently no approved treatments for PPMS).
  • Gilenya (Fingolimod) is the first once-daily pill you can take for relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS).
  • Studies show it lowers relapse rates better than placebo and Avonex, and it delays the progression of physical disabilites better than placebo.
  • Gilenya also reduced the number of new MS lesions better than Avonex.
Downsides
  • Requires injections, either day or every other day (but no more than three times a week), depending on the dose you're taking.
  • Injection site reactions are common with pain, redness, swelling, and lipoatrophy (loss of fat under the skin where the injection is made).
  • Doesn't stop the progression of MS.
  • Taking more than the 0.5 mg dose won't give more benefits, but will only cause more side effects.
  • Gilenya can remain in your blood for up to 2 months after you stop taking it. Your immune response won't work as well during this time.
  • Not the best choice if you've had a heart attack, stroke, or have been in the hospital for heart failure in the past 6 months. The risk of serious heart rate effects is higher when taken with certain drugs (methadone, erythromycin, citalopram, ketoconazole) or if you have low potassium or magnesium.
  • If you have to re-start Gilenya after stopping it for 2 weeks or more, you'll have to take your first dose at your doctor's office again.
  • If you didn't get chicken pox and never had a vaccination, you'll need to be vaccinated and wait one month before starting Gilenya.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Injection
  • Pill
Price
Lowest price
$7263.27
Find instant savings near you
Lowest price
$5558.31
Find instant savings near you
Want to save even more money?
Sign up now for a 30-day trial and save up to 95% at CVS, Kroger, Albertsons, and other pharmacies.
Reviews
30 reviews so far
50%
saidit'sworth it
37%
saiditworked well
27%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Copaxone (Glatiramer)?

Leave a review
57 reviews so far
42%
saidit'sworth it
30%
saiditworked well
30%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Gilenya (Fingolimod)?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Copaxone (Glatiramer) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
29possible side effects
  • Headache
    25%
  • ALT/AST increased
    14%
  • Influenza viral infections
    13%
  • Diarrhea
    12%
  • Back pain
    12%
  • Cough
    10%
  • Herpes viral infections
    9%
  • Bronchitis
    8%
  • Dyspnea
    8%
  • Depression
    8%
  • Sinusitis
    7%
  • Dizziness
    7%
  • Hypertension
    6%
  • Gastroenteritis
    5%
  • Paresthesia
    5%
  • Migraine
    5%
  • GGT increased
    5%
  • Weight decreased
    5%
  • Tinea infections
    4%
  • Bradycardia
    4%
  • Alopecia
    4%
  • Vission blurred
    4%
  • Lymphopenia
    4%
  • Asthenia
    3%
  • Eczema
    3%
  • Pruritus
    3%
  • Blood triglycerides increased
    3%
  • Eye pain
    3%
  • Leukopenia
    3%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Injection reaction
  • Skin damage
  • Chest pain
  • Immunosuppression
  • Risk to fetus
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Heart problems
    • Taking with drugs that slow heart rate
    • History of heart problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Serious infections
    • Taking other immunosuppressant drugs
    • Age 60 or older
    • Weak immune system
  • Eye problems
    • Diabetes
    • History of eye inflammation (uveitis)
  • Risk to fetus
    • Women of childbearing age
  • Respiratory problems
    • History of respiratory problems
  • Liver problems
    • History of liver problems
See more detailed risks and warnings