Xolair is a type of medication that is injected under the skin. The active substance omalizumab ensures that the production of specific antibodies in the body is suppressed. This will prevent allergic reactions of the respiratory distress and this will reduce attacks.
What is Xolair used for?
This medication is prescribed to adults and children over 6 years with severe forms of allergic asthma, and in whom other asthma medications (bronchodilators, respiratory protectors) are not working properly. Usually you use Xolair in combination with other medications for asthma, such as an inhaled corticosteroid.
How to use Xolair?
Xolair is administered by means of an injection. This drug works very long: injections are usually needed once every 2 to 4 weeks. It takes several weeks to months before the effect of Xolair is noticeable: the frequency and severity of shortness of breath attacks gradually decrease. Xolair is a medication that has to be used for a long time. Never stop all of a sudden with the treatment: asthma may return and worsen.
Store Xolair in the refrigerator (not freezer).
Xolair contains 150 mg of omalizumab per ml and is available in a pre-filled syringes of 0.5 ml (contains 75 mg of active substance) or 1 ml (contains 150 mg of active substance).
The doctor will decide which strength you need and how often you should get a Xolair injection. This depends on your blood levels and body weight among other things.
Side effects of Xolair include:
- irritation or inflammation of the skin where it was injected. This decreases after a few hours.
- sore throat and / or flu-like symptoms such as chills, muscle ache, nausea
- headache (right after the injection), for this you can take acetaminophen.
Read the leaflet for a complete list of possible side effects and other warnings. Talk to your doctor if you experience severe side effects, or if you get symptoms that are not listed in the leaflet.
Pregnancy / breastfeeding
Little is known about the effects that Xolair has on a baby or fetus. For this reason the use of Xolair is not recommended if you are pregnant or are planning to become pregnant, or if you are breastfeeding. However, always follow the advice of the doctor.