Ixekizumab

Ixekizumab treats moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis (a skin condition characterized by raised, red patches covered with flaky, silvery scales) and active psoriatic arthritis.

Ixekizumab Overview

Reviewed: March 23, 2016
Updated: 

Ixekizumab is a prescription medication used to treat moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis and active psoriatic arthritis. It belongs to a group of drugs called interleukin blockers. These drugs work by blocking the inflammatory process that is responsible for the development of plaque psoriasis and active psoriatic arthritis.

Ixekizumab comes in an autoinjector and a prefilled syringe that you or your caregiver may use at home to give injections. Ixekizumab is injected just under your skin (subcutaneous injection), in your thighs, stomach area, or the back of your arm, by you or a caregiver. 

Common side effects include injection site reactions, upper respiratory tract infections, and nausea. 

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Ixekizumab Cautionary Labels

precautionsprecautions

Uses of Ixekizumab

Ixekizumab is a prescription medication used to treat adults:

  • with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis and who may benefit from taking injections or pills (systemic therapy) or phototherapy (treatment using ultraviolet or UV light)
  • with active psoriatic arthritis (can be used alone or with the medicine methotrexate)

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Ixekizumab Brand Names

Ixekizumab may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Ixekizumab Drug Class

Ixekizumab is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Ixekizumab

Ixekizumab may cause serious side effects. See "Drug Precautions".

Common side effects include:

  • injection site reactions
  • upper respiratory infections
  • fungal infections
  • nausea

This is not a complete list of ixekizumab side effects. Tell your doctor about any side effect that bothers you or does not go away.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Ixekizumab Interactions

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your healthcare provider if you take:

  • warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven)
  • cyclosporine

Tell your healthcare provider if you are planning to receive any "live" vaccines such as chickenpox vaccine (Varicella), nasal vaccine for influenza (FluMist), measles, mumps, rubella vaccine (MMR), Polio vaccine, Rotavirus vaccine, Smallpox vaccine, Yellow fever vaccine, BCG vaccine. If you receive a "live vaccine" while taking ixekizumab, you may become infected with the bacteria or virus contained in the vaccine.

Keep a list of all your medicines with you to show your healthcare provider and pharmacist each time you get a new medicine. Ask your healthcare provider if you are not sure if your medicine is one listed above.

    Ixekizumab Precautions

    Serious side effects have been reported with ixekizumab including the following:

    • Serious allergic reactions. If you have a severe allergic reaction, do not give another injection of ixekizumab. Get emergency medical help right away if you get any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction:
      • feel faint
      • swelling of your face, eyelids, lips, mouth, tongue, or throat
      • trouble breathing or throat tightness
      • chest tightness
      • skin rash
    • Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis (Inflammatory bowel disease) can happen during treatment with ixekizumab, including worsening symptoms. Tell your healthcare provider if you have new or worsening symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease during treatment, including:
      • stomach (abdomen) pain
      • diarrhea with or without blood
      • weight loss
    • Infections: Serious infections have happened. If you experience any signs of symptoms of an infection, contact your healthcare provider. Signs and symptoms of infections are: 
      • fever, sweats, or chills
      • muscle aches
      • cough
      • shortness of breath
      • blood in your phlegm (mucus)
    • Tuberculosis (TB) infection. This medication may affect your immune system. Ixekizumab may lower the ability of your immune system to fight infections and may increase your risk of infections, which can become serious.
      • Your healthcare provider should check you for tuberculosis (TB) before you start treatment with ixekizumab.
      • Your healthcare provider may treat you with medicine for TB before you begin treatment with ixekizumab if you have a past history of TB or have TB.
      • Your healthcare provider should watch you closely for signs and symptoms of TB during and after treatment with ixekizumab. 
    • Before receiving ixekizumab, tell your tell your healthcare provider if you recently received or are scheduled to receive an immunization (vaccine). It is not recommended you receive live vaccines during treatment with ixekizumab. In addition, your healthcare provider may need to schedule certain vaccines before you start receiving ixekizumab. 

    Do not use ixekizumab if you have had a severe allergic reaction to ixekizumab or any of the other inactive ingredients.

    Ixekizumab Food Interactions

    Medicines can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of ixekizumab, there are no specific foods you must exclude from your diet when receiving this medication.

    Inform MD

    Before using ixekizumab, tell your healthcare provider about all of your medical conditions, including if you:

    • are allergic to ixekizumab or to any of its ingredients
    • are being treated for an infection
    • have an infection that does not go away or that keeps coming back
    • have TB or have been in close contact with someone with TB
    • think you have an infection or have symptoms of an infection
    • have Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
    • have recently received or are scheduled to receive an immunization (vaccine). It is not recommended you receive live vaccines during treatment with ixekizumab
    • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if this medicine can harm your unborn baby.
    • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if this medicine passes into your breast milk.

    Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

    Ixekizumab and Pregnancy

    Before using ixekizumab, tell your healthcare provider if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if this medicine can harm your unborn baby.

    Ixekizumab and Lactation

    Before using ixekizumab, tell your healthcare provider if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if this medicine passes into your breast milk.

    Ixekizumab Usage

    Use ixekizumab exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider.

    • If your healthcare provider decides that you or a caregiver may give your injections of ixekizumab at home, you should receive training on the right way to prepare and inject ixekizumab. Do not try to inject yourself, until you or your caregiver have been shown how to inject ixekizumab.
    • Ixekizumab comes in an autoinjector and a prefilled syringe that you or your caregiver may use at home to give injections. Your healthcare provider will decide which type of ixekizumab is best for you to use at home.
    • Ixekizumab is given as an injection under your skin (subcutaneous injection), in your thighs or stomach area (abdomen) by you or a caregiver. A caregiver may also give you the injection of ixekizumab in the back of your arm.
    • Do not give an injection in an area of the skin that is tender, bruised, red or hard, or in an area of skin that is affected by psoriasis.
    • Each injection should be given at an alternate site. Do not use the one-inch area around your navel (belly button).

    If you forget to take your dose:

    • Do not miss any doses unless your healthcare provider says it is okay. If you forget to take your dose, inject a dose as soon as you remember. Then, take your next dose at your regular scheduled time.
    • If you inject more ixekizumab than prescribed, call your healthcare provider or go to the nearest emergency room right away.

    Ixekizumab Dosage

    The recommended dose for plaque psoriasis is Taltz (ixekizumab) 160 mg (two 80 mg injections) at Week 0, followed by 80 mg at Weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12, then 80 mg every 4 weeks.

    The recommended dose for psoriatic arthritis is Taltz (ixekizumab) 160 mg (two 80 mg injections) at Week 0, followed by 80 mg every 4 weeks.

    For those with psoriatic arthritis and moderate-to-severe plaque psoriasis, the recommended dose is Taltz (ixekizumab) 160 mg (two 80 mg injections) at Week 0, followed by 80 mg at Weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12, then 80 mg every 4 weeks.

    Ixekizumab Overdose

    If you take too much ixekizumab, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center right away.

    Other Requirements

    • Store ixekizumab in the refrigerator between 36°F to 46°F (2°C to 8°C).
    • Protect from light.
    • Do not freeze. Do not use if ixekizumab has been frozen.
    • Do not shake the injection.

    Keep all medicines out of the reach of children and pets.