Benlysta (belimumab) Side Effects, Dosing, Cost | Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD | RxEconsult

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Benlysta (belimumab) Cost, Side Effects, Dosing, Interactions, Effectiveness Category: Rheumatoid Arthritis & Inflammatory Conditions by - October 7, 2011 | Views: 11355 | Likes: 0 | Comment: 0  

Benlysta | belimumab

Drug Class: B-cell inhibitor
Manufacturer: Human Genome Sciences
Approval date: March 2011

What is Benlysta

Benlysta is a man-made antibody that reduces the activity of immune cells (B-cells) in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE or lupus). Antibodies produced by defective B-cells contribute to development of SLE.

What does Benlysta treat

Benlysta is used for the treatment of adults with active, antibody-positive SLE and receiving other SLE therapies.

How effective is Benlysta

  • 58% of Benlysta treated individuals compared to 44% in the placebo group improved after 52 weeks of treatment.
  • Most of the improvement were in symptoms related to muscle, skeletal system, skin, mucous membranes, and immune system.

What are interesting facts about Benlysta

  • Targets B-cells
  • Administered monthly after the initial doses
  • Provides additional benefit when combined with standard SLE treatment

Benlysta dosing

10 mg/kg intravenous infusion at 2-week intervals for 3 doses, then every 4-weeks. Each infusion lasts one hour.

What is the cost of Benlysta

Each vial cost about $1477.26 and the yearly cost is about $35,000 without insurance.

What are the side effects of Benlysta

Common: Infusion reactions, nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, cough (bronchitis), insomnia, leg or arm pain, migraine, and sore throat

Serious: Infections, heart problems, depression, suicide, cancers

Benlysta drug interactions

  • Vaccines

How to obtain patient assistance for Benlysta

Contact the Benlysta Co-pay Assistance program

References: Benlysta FDA Prescribing Information and Medication Guide


The material on this site is for information only and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment provided by a qualified health care provider.


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