Below you'll find some common questions that people have about rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and Rituxan. Click any of the questions you're curious about to see the answer.
While every person responds differently to treatment, 2 clinical trials have studied Rituxan + methotrexate in people who found that TNF inhibitor treatments did not work well enough for them. To read more about those patients' results on Rituxan, explore our Results >
When starting a treatment, there are many important factors to discuss with your doctor or nurse practitioner, including the potential risks and benefits. The FDA-approved Rituxan safety information includes the risk of some potentially serious and life-threatening side effects. To learn more about the possible side effects of Rituxan, please see the Important Side Effect Information page.
Like some other treatments for RA, Rituxan must be given directly into the bloodstream. So instead of being taken as a pill or an injection, it is given as an IV infusion. An IV infusion is a needle placed in a vein by a trained healthcare professional. When you receive your Rituxan infusion, it will be given to you in combination with another medication called methotrexate. Rituxan infusions will be administered 3-5 times a year at your doctor’s office, an infusion center, or a hospital. Each infusion typically lasts 4 to 6 hours, so it’s a good idea to plan accordingly.
You may be given additional medicine before each infusion to reduce the risk of side effects (this will add to the total time of your treatment). If you experience any discomfort during the infusion, seek immediate medical attention.
Infusion-related reactions are the most common side effect of Rituxan treatment. Serious infusion-related reactions can happen during your infusion or within 24 hours after your infusion of Rituxan.
Rituxan should be given every 6 months or based on clinical evaluation, but no sooner than every 4 months (16 weeks). Each dose consists of 2 infusions given 2 weeks apart. Before each Rituxan treatment, your doctor will ask you questions about your general health to make sure Rituxan is still right for you. Tell your doctor about any side effects or new symptoms you have, symptoms that have gotten worse over time, or symptoms that will not go away.
If your health insurance plan will not cover Rituxan, you and your doctor’s office can file an appeal. Contact your doctor to ask if you should file an appeal. We have resources to help you and your doctor file one. To learn more about your potential financial assistance options, visit our Financial Assistance Options page.*
Our patient resource center is dedicated to getting patients and caregivers to the right resources. Call 1-877-GENENTECH (1-877-436-3683) Monday-Friday, 6 AM - 5 PM PT with questions.
TNF, tumor necrosis factor.
*RITUXAN Immunology Access Solutions cannot complete or submit an appeal for you.
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