|Treatments > Medications Used In MS|
Approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Glatiramer acetate should be kept refrigerated at all times. If refrigeration is not available, the drug may be safely stored at room temperature for up to seven days.
Glatiramer acetate is light-sensitive; protect it from light when not injecting.
Use each pre-filled syringe for only one injection. Dispose of the syringes as directed by your physician and keep them out of the reach of children.
Because injection-site reactions (swelling, redness, discoloration, or pain) are relatively common, it is recommended that the sites be rotated according to a schedule provided for you by your physician. Do not use any one site more than once per week.
Do not change the dose or dosing schedule of this medication without consulting your physician.
Glatiramer acetate is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Women who wish to become pregnant should discuss this medication, and all others they are taking, with their physician. If you become pregnant while on the medication, inform your physician. Glatiramer acetate is a Pregnancy Category B medication, meaning that although no adverse effects have been found in animal studies, no adequate, well-controlled studies have been done in pregnant women to demonstrate its safety in humans.
It is not known whether glatiramer acetate passes into the breast milk. Nursing women should discuss the use of this medication with their physician.
Possible Side Effects
Unusual side effects that should be discussed as soon as possible with your doctor: Hives (an itchy, blotchy swelling of the skin) or severe pain at the injection site.
Possible immediate post-injection reaction: Approximately 13% of individuals using Copaxone will experience, at one time or another, a transient (very temporary) reaction immediately after injecting glatiramer acetate. This reaction, which usually occurs only once, includes flushing or chest tightness with heart palpitations, anxiety, and difficulty breathing. During the clinical trials, these reactions occurred very rarely, usually within minutes of an injection. They lasted approximately 15 minutes and resolved without further problem.
*Since it may be difficult to distinguish between certain common symptoms of MS and some side effects of glatiramer acetate, be sure to consult your health care professional if an abrupt change of this type occurs.
COPAXONE SUPPORT PROGRAM
|Last updated September 21, 2006|