Natalizumab is indicated for the treatment of relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS). In MS the central nervous system which includes the brain and spinal cord become damaged. MS causes the immune system to attack the myelin which is the insulation protecting the nerves. This medication helps to prevent your immune system from attacking the nerves in your brain and spinal cord.
Natalizumab may also be used to treat bowel condition called Crohn’s disease (CD). This is used when it is moderate to severe and keeps coming back. This helps prevent the immune system from causing inflammation or swelling within your bowels.
How does Natalizumab work?
Natalizumab binds to a specific receptor known as an integrin. It is found on the surface of white blood cells called leucocytes. The leucocytes are involved in producing inflammation. It is believed that brain lesions in multiple sclerosis occur when certain leucocytes move out of the blood and into the brain. Blocking the integrin receptors on the leucocytes stops them from moving from the blood into the brain. This lessens inflammation in the brain and decreases the enlargement of brain lesions. That it may result in the nerve damage caused by multiple sclerosis.
Why use Natalizumab?
Natalizumab is a type of medicine called human monoclonal antibody. This helps decrease the number of episodes of worsening and may prevent or delay disability. This medication is supplied as a sterile, colorless, and clear to slightly opalescent concentrate for intravenous infusion. Each 15 ml dose contains 300 mg of Natalizumab. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this prescription.
How to use Natalizumab?
The recommended dosage is based on your medical condition and response. To lessen your risk of side effects, your doctor may start you at a low dose and slowly increase your dose. Do not take more or less of this medication.
Natalizumab is given by a healthcare professional. This is usually given every 4 weeks or as directed by your doctor. This medication is mixed in a solution and injected slowly into a vein usually over an hour. Do not miss any doses without your doctor’s consent.
What are the side effects of Natalizumab?
- Tired feeling
- Muscle or joint pain
- Redness or irritation at the injection site’
- Stomach pain
- Skin rash
- Painful menstrual cramps
- Swelling of the hands, feet, or ankles
- Chest pain
Warnings and Precautions
- Before using this medication, tell your doctor if you are allergic to it. Tell as well if you have any medical history especially of depression or organ transplant.
- If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your doctor first before using this.
- This may not be recommended for use by breastfeeding women.
- Do not share this with others even if they have the same symptoms as yours.