Drug information provided by: IBM Micromedex
It is very important that your doctor check your or your child's progress closely and at regular visits to make sure this medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to receive it. Blood and urine tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
You should not receive this medicine if you are also using other biologic treatments or cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan®). Using these medicines together may increase your chance for more serious side effects.
Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control during treatment and for at least 4 months after the last dose. If you think you have become pregnant while using this medicine, tell your doctor right away.
This medicine may increase your risk of developing infections, including a serious brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML). Avoid being near people who are sick and wash your hands often. Check with your doctor right away if you have a fever, chills, a cough that won't go away, flu-like symptoms, a headache, night sweats, or weight loss. Tell your doctor if you have balance problems, confusion, difficulty talking or walking, dizziness, memory loss, or vision changes.
Using this medicine may increase your risk of getting cancer. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns about this risk.
Belimumab may cause infusion reactions, which can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Tell your doctor right away if you start to have a fever, chills or shaking, dizziness, trouble breathing, itching or rash, lightheadedness or fainting, after receiving this medicine.
This medicine may cause serious allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Tell your doctor right away if you have a rash, itching, hoarseness, trouble breathing, trouble swallowing, or any swelling of your hands, face, or mouth after using this medicine.
This medicine may cause some people to be agitated, irritable, or display other abnormal behaviors. It may also cause some people to have suicidal thoughts and tendencies or to become depressed. Also tell your doctor if you have sudden or strong feelings, such as feeling nervous, angry, restless, violent, or scared. If you or your caregiver notice any of these unwanted effects, tell your doctor right away.
While you are being treated with belimumab, and 30 days before starting treatment with it, do not have any immunizations (vaccines) without your doctor's approval. Belimumab may lower your body's resistance and the vaccine may not work as well or you might get the infection the vaccine is meant to prevent. In addition, you should not be around other persons living in your household who are receiving live virus vaccines because there is a chance they could pass the virus on to you. Some examples of live vaccines include measles, mumps, influenza (nasal flu vaccine), poliovirus (oral form), rotavirus, and rubella. Do not get close to them and do not stay in the same room with them for very long. If you have questions about this, talk to your doctor.
Tell your doctor if you are African-American or have African ancestry. This medicine may not work the same way and may require caution in African-American patients receiving belimumab. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns.