RITUXAN therapy

Preparing for your RITUXAN infusion

Use this checklist before each infusion to help make sure you are ready:

  • Ask your doctor or nurse about your medicine
    If you take any other medicines, remind your doctor or nurse. Do not start any new medications without talking to your doctor. Your doctor may give you special instructions that day.
  • Read the Medication Guide
    Talk to your doctor if you have any questions about your treatment with RITUXAN.
  • Arrange transportation
    The medicines that are given to help reduce severe infusion reactions may make you drowsy or dizzy, so it is a good idea to have someone else drive you home after treatments.
  • Ask questions
    Be sure to tell your doctor or nurse about any concerns you have before beginning your infusion.
  • Pack something to eat and drink
    There are no special rules about what you should eat or drink before an infusion. You may be at the clinic most of the day, so you may want to take some snacks or a packed meal.
  • Pack something to do
    Activities such as crossword puzzles, crochet, or a book to read can help you pass the time.

What should I tell my doctor before receiving RITUXAN?

Before receiving RITUXAN, tell your doctor if you:

  • Have had a severe infusion reaction to RITUXAN in the past
  • Have a history of heart problems, irregular heart beat or chest pain
  • Have lung or kidney problems
  • Have an infection or weakened immune system
  • Have or have had any severe infections including:
    • Hepatitis B virus (HBV)
    • Hepatitis C virus (HCV)
    • Cytomegalovirus (CMV)
    • Herpes simplex virus (HSV)
    • Parvovirus B19
    • Varicella zoster virus (chickenpox or shingles)
    • West Nile Virus
  • Have had a recent vaccination, are scheduled to receive vaccinations, or if anyone in your household is scheduled to receive a vaccination. You should not receive certain vaccines before or after you receive RITUXAN. Some types of vaccines can spread to people with a weakened immune system, and cause serious problems
  • Have taken RITUXAN for GPA or MPA in the past
  • Have any other medical conditions
  • Are pregnant or planning to become pregnant. RITUXAN may affect the white blood cell counts of your unborn baby. It is not known if RITUXAN may harm your unborn baby in other ways. Women who are able to become pregnant should use effective birth control (contraception) while using RITUXAN and for 12 months after you finish treatment. Talk to your doctor about effective birth control
  • Are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if RITUXAN passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide the best way to feed your baby if you receive RITUXAN

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take or have taken:

  • A Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF) inhibitor medicine
  • A Disease Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug (DMARD)

If you are not sure if your medicine is one listed above, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of them to show to your doctor and pharmacist when you get a new medicine. Do not take any new medicine without talking with your doctor.

NEXT: YOUR FIRST INFUSION

RITUXAN is available by prescription only.