KEVZARA is a brand name of sarilumab, an approved medication to treat moderate to severe active rheumatoid arthritis (RA) for adult patients.
How KEVZARA works in the body?
KEVZARA is an interleukin-6 (IL-6) receptor blocker. KEVZARA is a synthetic protein base biologic medication. Research and development team design this medication to stop inflammation by blocking interleukin-6 receptor (IL-6R) present in the immune system. Thus, KEVZARA reduces joint inflammation and associated pain symptoms occur due to rheumatoid arthritis and other symptoms caused by inflammation.
Route of administration and Available dosage forms
KEVZARA is a parenteral dosage form given through injection. Prefilled syringe and prefilled pen are available in the market with two different dosage strengths i.e. 150mg/1.14mL and 200mg/1.14mL.
How to take this medication?
KEVZARA is given through the subcutaneous route. Adult patients suffering from severe rheumatoid arthritis can self-administer this medication by injecting it under the skin of the thigh or abdomen. The patient needs to take this injection according to the prescribed dose (150 mg or 200 mg) every two weeks. The injection site needs to rotate so that the same site cannot be used repeatedly. The symptomatic improvement is noticeable within a few weeks but a complete effect can be observed after using KEVZARA for several months.
KEVZARA may be prescribed as a single therapy or in combination with other non-biologic drugs and methotrexate. But KEVZARA does not combine with another biological drug. Periodic routine tests are conducted to monitor the blood cell counts, cholesterol level, and liver enzyme status during the KEVZARA therapy.
When does KEVZARA medicine prescribe?
Doctors prescribe KEVZARA only to adult patients who have moderate to severely active rheumatoid arthritis and showed resistance or intolerability against at least one disease-modifying antirheumatic drug (DMARD).
Other indications for KEVZARA
According to the data available on March 24, 2020, KEVZARA is used as an off-label medication against Coronavirus Disease 2019. However, yet now FDA does not approve Sarilumab for the COVID-19 treatment regimen but may consider it for use as part of an investigational protocol for patients with COVID-19.
KEVZARA treatment lowers the immune system functioning against infections. Therefore, the risk of infection increases during KEVZARA therapy. Patients need to immediately consult with a doctor after the onset of any infectious disease. Test for tuberculosis is compulsory for every patient before starting the KEVZARA treatment regimen. The doctor also monitors signs and symptoms of tuberculosis during the KEVZARA, though in a rare instance such type of infections develops.
Bowel perforation, a rare complication associated with KEVZARA was seen in a clinical trial. If patient experience abdominal pain or bloody bowel movements during KEVZARA therapy, a patient need to contact a doctor immediately.
Patients who had a history of cancer or familial cancer history should inform the doctor before starting the medication, as impaired immune therapy due to KEVZARA treatment can increase the cancer risk. Patients who have allergic tendencies can develop allergic reactions because of KEVZARA therapy containing Sarilumab.
Some of the most common side effects of KEVZARA treatment are redness at the injection site, urinary tract infection, upper respiratory tract infection, and associated symptoms like sore throat, nasal congestion, and runny nose.