"Oct. 5, 2011 -- People with multiple sclerosis (MS) may soon have a second needle-free option to control their disease.
Last year, the FDA approved the first disease-modifying pill, a drug called Gilenya, to treat MS.
IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
FINGOLIMOD - ORAL
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Gilenya
USES: This medication is used to treat a certain type of multiple sclerosis (relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis-MS). It is not a cure for MS but it is thought to help by preventing immune system cells (lymphocytes) from attacking the nerves in your brain and spinal cord. It helps decrease the number of episodes of worsening and may prevent or delay disability.
HOW TO USE: Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start taking fingolimod and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Before starting fingolimod, your doctor will do medical/laboratory tests (such as complete blood count, blood pressure, EKG, pulse) to monitor for side effects. Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once a day. You will be monitored for at least 6 hours after the first dose to make sure your heartbeat does not go too slow. A very slow heartbeat increases the risk for a serious heart rhythm problem (QT prolongation in the EKG). Tell your doctor if you have low levels of magnesium/potassium in the blood, personal or family history of QT prolongation in the EKG, family history of sudden cardiac death, or heart failure. Also tell your doctor if you are taking other drugs that can slow down your heartbeat or affect heart rhythm (such as causing QT prolongation in the EKG). See also Drug Interactions section.
If you temporarily stop taking fingolimod after starting treatment, you may need to be monitored again for at least 6 hours after you restart this medication. Ask your doctor for details.
Do not increase your dose or take this medication more often than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, and the risk of serious side effects may be increased.
Take this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day.
Tell your doctor if your condition does not improve or if it worsens.
Additional Gilenya Information
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