Calms down your immune system. Enbrel (Etanercept) is very effective at calming down your immune system, but it's expensive, you have to take into account the hassle of injections and traveling with the medication.
Calms down your immune system. Remicade (Infliximab) is very effective at calming down your immune system, but you have to get each dose at your doctor's office and watch out for serious side effects.
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Enbrel (Etanercept) is a biologic response modifier. It works in the immune system to block a protein called TNF (tumor necrosis factor). Blocking TNF relieves symptoms and prevents disease progression.
Remicade (Infliximab) is a biologic response modifier. It works in the immune system to block a protein called TNF (tumor necrosis factor). Blocking TNF relieves symptoms and prevents disease progression.
› Although rare, Remicade (Infliximab) can cause serious liver injury. You'll need to have your liver enzymes tested regularly. If liver enzymes are significantly elevated and you have appetite/weight loss, stomach discomfort, vomiting, and notice dark urine, yellowing of skin/eyes, change in stool color, and skin rash you should stop treatment with Remicade (Infliximab) until you can be completely assessed,
Upsides and benefits
› Treats certain types of arthritis conditions caused by an overactive immune system.
› Enbrel is the first biologic approved for moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis.
› It has an established safety profile for treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
› Available as a single-use syringe and SureClick auto-injector pen which may be more convenient and easier for some people to use.
› People taking Enbrel for rheumatoid arthritis showed significant improvement and were able to reduce the dose or stop immunosuppressant medicines.
› Treats certain types of arthritis and gastrointestinal conditions caused by an overactive immune system.
› Remicade has almost two decades of clinical trial data and real-life experience with millions of people who have used it.
› Initial dosing to introduce Remicade to your body might be a hassle, but then you only need to take it every 6-8 weeks depending on your condition.
Downsides and risks
› It's an injection.
› Enbrel lowers your ability to fight infection and can cause serious life-threatening illness. The risk is greater if you take other drugs that lower your immune system, have an active infection, diabetes, or had tuberculosis (TB) in the past.
› You're first dose of Enbrel will need to be given at your doctor's office. If you decide not to self-inject and don't have someone to do it for you, you'll need to continue to see your doctor for each dose.
› You'll need to properly dispose of the needle, syringes, or Pen in a special (FDA-approved) sharps container.
› Because it needs to be refrigerated until you use it, if you're traveling, you'll need to carry it in a cooler with an ice pack.
› It's expensive because there's no generic available yet.
› You have to get every dose through an IV infusion at your doctor's office.
› Remicade has a higher risk of serious infusion-related side effects during or after it's given since it's injected right into your veins. Your doctor can prescribe medication before your dose that may lower this risk.
› Remicade lowers your ability to fight infection and can cause serious life-threatening illness. The risk is greater if you take other drugs that lower your immune system, have an active infection, diabetes, or had tuberculosis (TB) in the past.
› Not the best choice if you have heart failure.
› Talk to your baby's doctor if you're pregnant or breast-feeding. When women in a study took Remicade (Infliximab), the medicine was found in their breast milk 2 to 3 days after each dose, and in the baby's blood 6 months after they were born.
› It's expensive because there's no generic available yet.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
› Enbrel (Etanercept) is available as a single-use prefilled syringe, single-use prefilled SureClick Autoinjector, and multiple-use vial. You and your doctor can discuss which is best for you.
› The autoinjector can be stored at room temperature for up to 14 days and can't be refrigerated again.
› Enbrel (Etanercept) is a medication that's injected under the skin (subcutaneous). Your doctor can give you your first dose, then let you self-inject it once so you learn how to do it correctly.
› Enbrel (Etanercept) lowers the your immune system's ability to fight infections, so it's important to let your doctor know if you come down with a fever, cough, or notice flu-like symptoms.
› You'll need to have a TB test before you start using Enbrel (Etanercept).
› Tell your doctor if you have an allergy to latex since the syringe needle cover has latex in it.
› Don't inject Enbrel (Etanercept) into skin that's red, bruised, or irritated. Rotate your injection areas to avoid skin reactions.
› As with all injection medicines, store away from children and throw used syringes away in a protective container, and not in the trash.
› Remicade (Infliximab) is a medication that's given as an infusion at your doctor's office or clinic.
› It's very important to read the patient Medication Guide when you first start using Remicade (Infliximab).
› It's possible to get an allergic reaction to Remicade (Infliximab) either immediately during the treatment or a several days after stopping it. Your doctor can give you medicines that'll lower this risk.
› You'll need to have a TB test before you start taking Remicade (Infliximab) and periodically during treatment.
› Remicade (Infliximab) lowers your immune system's ability to fight infections, so it's important to let your doctor know if you notice a fever, cough, or flu-like symptoms. Children seem to get more infections than adults, so keep a close eye on them.
› If you have a young child, let their doctor know if you were on Remicade (Infliximab) while pregnant or nursing. It can increase their risk of infections for several months after your last dose and can delay their vaccine schedule.