This medication is used alone or in combination with an immunosuppressant (such as methotrexate) to treat certain types of arthritis (such as rheumatoid, psoriatic, juvenile idiopathic, and ankylosing spondylitis), as well as a skin condition called psoriasis. These conditions are caused by an overactive immune system (autoimmune disease). The immune system attacks the body's own healthy cells, causing inflammation in the joints and skin.
Etanercept controls your body's defensive response by blocking the action of a certain natural substance (TNF) that is used by the immune system. Treatment decreases redness, itching and scaly patches in psoriasis as well as the pain, swelling and stiffness of joints in arthritis. This medication can stop the progression of disease and joint damage, resulting in improved daily functioning and quality of life.
This medication treats but does not cure autoimmune diseases. Symptoms usually return within 1 month of stopping the medication.
How To Use
Read the Medication Guide and the Patient Information Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you start using this drug and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Etanercept is injected under the skin of the thigh, abdomen, or upper arm, usually once or twice weekly exactly as prescribed by your doctor.
Your dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Do not change your dose without first consulting your doctor. Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. You should start to see an improvement in 1 to 2 weeks. It may take up to 3 months to receive the full benefit of this medication.
If you will be giving yourself the injection, your doctor may want you to have the first injection in the medical office. Make sure you learn the proper way to inject this medication from your health care professional, as described in the Patient Information Leaflet from the manufacturer.
Remove the medication from the refrigerator and allow it to warm to room temperature before injecting. This takes about 15 to 30 minutes. Do not shake the product. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid.
Before injecting each dose, clean the injection site with rubbing alcohol. It is important to change the location of the injection site each time you use this drug to prevent problems under the skin. New injections should be given at least 1 inch (2.5 centimeters) from an old injection site. Do not inject into areas of the skin that are sore, bruised, red, or hard.
Learn how to store and discard needles and medical supplies safely. Consult your pharmacist. Never reuse needles or syringes.
Tell your doctor if your condition persists or worsens.