What is Copaxone?
Copaxone® is the trade name of a prescription drug containing glatiramer as the active component.
Glatiramer is a drug used in the treatment of patients with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis(MS), it is classified as an immunomodulating agent meaning it aids in modifying the manner in which the immune system works in multiple sclerosis patients. Copaxone® is manufactured by Teva Pharmaceuticals, Copaxone® is available as a pre-filled syringe solution for injection and is available in pack size of 12 x 1ml Pre-filled syringes.
Glatiramer is the active component of a the drug called Copaxone®, it is used in the treatment of MS, it’s actual mechanism by which it works is unknown however it is believed to work by modifying the body’s immune system which is known to be the cause (pathogenesis) of MS. MS inflammation in the spinal cord and brain is thought to be caused by defects in the body’s immune system. Glatiramer is has not been proven to have any effects on any forms of MS that does not relapse.
Conditions Treated by Copaxone®
Glatiramer 40 mg/ml is used in the treatment of;
- Relapses in MS (it reduces the number of times someone suffers from MS attacks).
Generic/brand name Copaxone®
There are no approved generic brands of glatiramer approved by the FDA for use in USA.
Indications and Dosage Information for Copaxone®
NOTE: Always ensure to use your medication as directed by your healthcare professional if you are not sure of how to please check with your pharmacist or doctor.
The recommended adult dose is 40 mg/ml (one pre-filled syringe) injected under the skin three times per week, at least 48 hours apart and on the same day each week if possible.
Do not mix or co-administer the contents of Copaxone® with any other product, or use the same syringe twice.
Discard the solution if it contains any particles and use a new one.
Copaxone® like all other drugs may exhibit some side effects, these side effects may range from mild (normally disappear) to severe (stop its use when the severe cases appear). Below is a list of some side affects you may experience with Copaxone® use.
Note: This list may not be complete therefore you should report any new experience or feeling occurring after the use of Copaxone®.
- Allergic Reactions (hypersensitivity), rash (red spots or nettle rash), swelling of the lips, face or eyelids, convulsions (fits), sudden shortness of breath and fainting
- Flushing (reddening) of the chest or face (vasodilatation), chest pain, shortness of breath, pounding and rapid heartbeat (palpitations, tachycardia).
- Infection, flu, anxiety, depression, headache, feeling sick
- Feeling weak
- loss of appetite, weight gain
- Double vision, eye disorder
- Altered taste, speech disorder, migraine, tremor and increase tightness of muscle tone.
- Abnormal liver function test.
- Urge to empty your bladder.
- Wasting of tissue under the skin at injection site.
Warnings and Precautions
Copaxone® is contraindicated in patients with a history or who are hypersensitive to glatiramer or any of the ingredients used in the formulation.
The safe use of Copaxone® in children under the age of 18 years and elderly has not been established.
Copaxone® should be used with caution in patients with hepatic or heart problems as constant checkups are necessary.
Tell your doctor about any medications you are currently using or have used.
Copaxone® is not known to impair one’s ability to operate machinery or drive however it should be use with caution.
Do not use Copaxone® if you are pregnant or plan on becoming pregnant while using it.
Taking Copaxone® with certain drugs can either potentiate their effects in the body or nullify them, it may affect the manner in which these drugs work or vice versa. Therefore you should know the medicines you take and always remember to tell your healthcare provider and pharmacist when you are prescribed new medicine.
NOTE: No substantial drug interactions have been established or noted with the use of Copaxone® and other drugs, the results obtained during clinical trials did not show and significant drug interactions with Copaxone® use and other therapies commonly used in MS treatment.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only and must not be considered as medical advice. YouDrugstore does not endorse or approve the opinions or views expressed by any contributing author in our community articles. Always consult your doctor for medical advice.