It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
Infliximab may cause an infusion reaction while you are receiving it or right after the infusion ends. Check with your doctor or nurse right away if you or your child have a chest pain; a fever; chills; itching; hives; a rash; dizziness, fainting, or lightheadedness; a headache; joint pain; difficulty with swallowing; shortness of breath; troubled breathing; or swelling of the face, tongue, and throat.
Your body's ability to fight infection may be reduced while you are using infliximab. It is very important that you call your doctor at the first sign of any infection. Check with your doctor right away if you or your child have any of the following symptoms while receiving this medicine: fever, chills, cough, flu-like symptoms, or unusual tiredness or weakness.
Serious skin reactions can occur while you are using this medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you or your child have any of the following symptoms while receiving this medicine: blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin; chills; cough; diarrhea; fever; itching; joint or muscle pain; red skin lesions; sore throat; sores, ulcers, or white spots in your mouth; or unusual tiredness or weakness.
This medicine may increase your chance of having a lupus-like syndrome or a liver disease called autoimmune hepatitis. Check with your doctor right away if you or your child have dark brown-colored urine, fever or chills; a general feeling of discomfort, illness, or weakness; joint pain; light-colored stools; nausea and vomiting; a rash on the cheeks or arms that is worse in the sun; severe tiredness; upper right-sided stomach pain; or yellow eyes and skin.
A small number of people (including children and teenagers) who have used this medicine have developed certain types of cancer. This is more common in patients who have lung diseases (e.g., emphysema, COPD) or are heavy smokers, and in psoriasis patients who have had phototherapy treatment for a long time. Phototherapy treatment is ultraviolet light or sunlight combined with oral medicine to make your skin sensitive to light. Some teenagers and young adults with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis also developed a rare type of cancer called hepatosplenic T-cell lymphoma. Talk with your doctor if you or your child have unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness; swollen lymph nodes in the neck, underarms, or groin; or unexplained weight loss. Also, check with your doctor right away if your skin has red, scaly patches, or raised bumps that are filled with pus.
While you or your child are being treated with infliximab, do not have any immunizations (vaccines) without your doctor's approval. Live virus vaccines should not be given to patients who are using infliximab. Additionally, make sure your doctor knows if you received infliximab while you were pregnant because it may be necessary to wait before giving your infant a live vaccine. Your child's vaccinations need to be current before he or she begins using infliximab. Be sure to ask your child's doctor if you have any questions about this.
You will need to have a skin test for tuberculosis before you or your child start using this medicine. Tell your doctor if you or anyone in your home has ever had a positive reaction to a tuberculosis skin test.
It is important to have your heart checked closely if you receive infliximab. Call your doctor right away if you or your child have shortness of breath, swelling in the ankles and feet, or a sudden weight gain.
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes abatacept (Orencia®), anakinra (Kineret®), or tocilizumab (Actemra®). Using these medicines together with infliximab may increase your chance of having serious side effects.