What Is Certolizumab Pegol?

Meshell Powell
Meshell Powell

Certolizumab pegol is a prescription medication designed to be injected underneath the skin for the treatment of Crohn's disease or rheumatoid arthritis. These injections can be administered by a health care professional, or the patient can be taught the proper way to self-inject the drug. Some of the most frequently reported side effects of certolizumab pegol include nasal congestion, muscle pain, and frequent urination. More serious side effects that should be reported to a doctor immediately may include shortness of breath; visual disturbances; or swelling of the face, tongue, or throat. A doctor should be consulted with any questions or concerns involving the use of certolizumab pegol in an individual situation.

Crohn's disease is a medical condition that causes inflammation of the digestive tract. Symptoms often include abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, and diarrhea. If other medications or dietary changes do not reduce the severity of these symptoms, certolizumab pegol may be prescribed. Rheumatoid arthritis, an inflammatory joint disorder, may sometimes be treated with this medication as well.

This drug is designed to be delivered in the form of a subcutaneous injection, meaning that the needle is inserted just underneath the skin. Depending on the individual situation, this medication may be administered in a medical facility by a health care professional or packaged for self-injection by the patient. Before the self-injection method is used, the medical staff will make sure the patient or caregiver has been properly trained concerning the correct way to administer the injection.

Mild to moderate side effects are relatively common when using certolizumab pegol, but any symptoms that persist or become particularly bothersome should be reported to a doctor for further evaluation. Temporary skin irritation at the injection site may cause mild redness, discomfort, or swelling. Some people may experience nasal congestion, muscle or joint pain, or increased urination.

Serious side effects associated with the use of certolizumab pegol are relatively uncommon but should be reported to a medical professional immediately if they do occur. Some things to look for include blurred vision, swelling of the feet or ankles, and a sudden or severe headache. Kidney failure, liver damage, and bleeding disorders are also possible side effects of this medication. Potentially life-threatening allergic reactions may cause facial swelling, chest pain, or difficulty breathing. If the throat swells enough to prevent adequate oxygen flow, brain damage or death may occur within a matter of minutes without proper medical care.

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