Gilenya (fingolimod) Uses, Side Effects, Dosage, Interactions

Category: Multiple Sclerosis by Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD - October 2, 2011 | Views: 4134 | Likes: 0 | Comment: 0

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Gilenya | fingolimod

Drug Class: Immunomodulators
Manufacturer: Novartis
Approval Date: October, 2010

What is Gilenya and how does it work

Gilenya is an oral medication used for treating multiple sclerosis (MS). It may work by reducing the migration of white blood cells into the central nervous system. White blood cells cause inflammation and destruction of nerves in patients with MS.

What does Gilenya treat

Gilenya delays the development of physical disability caused by MS and decreases the number of MS flare-ups. Gilenya does not cure MS.

How well does Gilenya work

  • 52% reduction in relapse when compared with Avonex (Interferon beta-1a)
  • 54% reduction in relapse rate when compared to placebo
  • 30% reduction in risk of disability progression when compared to placebo

What are interesting facts about Gilenya

  • First oral medication used for treating MS
  • Reduces white blood cell migration

What is the dosage of Gilenya

One capsule (0.5 mg) orally once daily with or without food

Doses higher than 0.5 mg cause more adverse reactions without providing additional benefit

What are the side effects of Gilenya

Common: Headache, flu, diarrhea, back pain, elevations of liver enzymes and cough

Serious: Slow heart beat, infections, visual problems, reduced number of white blood cells, difficulty breathing

Drug interactions

  • Ketoconazole increases blood concentration of Gilenya
  • Live attenuated vaccines will not work as well
  • Drugs that decrease heart rate add to the heart rate reducing effect of Gilenya

What is the cost of Gilenya

Gilenya costs $58,000 per year.

How to obtain prescription assistance for Gilenya

Visit Novartis Access to Medicines, Gilenya GO Program, and the Gilenya co-pay support program.

 

References: Gilenya 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 healthcare provider.

 

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