Health Library

  • glatiramer (injection)
 

glatiramer (injection)

Pronunciation: gla TIR a mer

Brand: Copaxone

What is the most important information I should know about glatiramer?

Use this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not use the medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the instructions on your prescription label.

Glatiramer is given as an injection under your skin. You may be given instructions on how to inject your medicine at home. Do not use this medicine at home if you do not fully understand how to give the injection and properly dispose of needles and syringes used in giving the medicine.

Multum donot

Do not stop using glatiramer without first talking with your doctor.

Glatiramer vials and prefilled syringes are for a single use only. Throw away the vial or syringe after each injection.

Multum refig

Store the prefilled syringes and vials (bottles) of glatiramer in the refrigerator. Do not allow the medicine to freeze.

Multum rt

You may also store glatiramer at room temperature, away from moisture, light, and high heat. Glatiramer will keep for up to 30 days if stored at room temperature. Throw away any unused glatiramer that has been at room temperature for longer than 30 days.

Multum emt

Some people receiving a glatiramer injection have had a severe reaction. Tell your caregiver right away if you feel anxious, warm, itchy, tingly, or have a pounding heartbeat, tightness in your throat, or trouble breathing during the injection. This type of reaction may occur even after you have been using glatiramer for several months.

What is glatiramer?

Glatiramer is a combination of four amino acids (proteins) that affect the immune system.

Glatiramer is used to treat multiple sclerosis (MS) and to prevent relapse of MS.

This medication will not cure MS, but it can make relapses occur less often.

Glatiramer may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using glatiramer?

Multum donot

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to glatiramer or to mannitol.

To make sure glatiramer is safe for you, tell your doctor about your other medical conditions.

FDA pregnancy category B. Glatiramer is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Multum nobrfeed

It is not known whether glatiramer passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I use glatiramer?

Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Glatiramer is injected under the skin. You may be shown how to use injections at home. Do not self inject this medicine if you do not fully understand how to give the injection and properly dispose of used needles and syringes.

This medication comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Multum icon27

Wash and dry your hands before preparing the syringe and giving the injection.

Glatiramer prefilled syringes are for a single use only. Throw away the vial or syringe after each injection.

Before using the prefilled syringe, take it out of the refrigerator and let it warm at room temperature for 20 minutes. Do not warm the medication in a microwave or hot water. Do not remove air bubbles from the prefilled syringe or you may accidentally remove a small amount of the medicine.

Multum donot

Do not use glatiramer if it has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your doctor for a new prescription.

Use a different place on your body each time you give yourself an injection. Your doctor will show you the places on your body where you can safely inject the medication. Do not inject glatiramer into the same place two times within 1 week.

Multum donot

Do not stop using glatiramer without first talking with your doctor.

Use each disposable needle only one time. Throw away used needles in a puncture-proof container (ask your pharmacist where you can get one and how to dispose of it). Keep this container out of the reach of children and pets.

Multum refig

Store the prefilled syringes and vials (bottles) of glatiramer in the refrigerator. Do not allow the medicine to freeze.

Multum rt

You may also store glatiramer at room temperature, away from moisture, light, and high heat. Glatiramer will keep for up to 30 days if stored at room temperature. Throw away any unused glatiramer that has been at room temperature for longer than 30 days.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Multum emt

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while using glatiramer?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

What are the possible side effects of glatiramer?

Multum emt

Some people receiving a glatiramer injection have had a severe reaction. Tell your caregiver right away if you feel anxious, warm, itchy, tingly, or have a pounding heartbeat, tightness in your throat, or trouble breathing during the injection. This type of reaction may occur even after you have been using glatiramer for several months.

Multum emt

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Multum donot

Stop using glatiramer and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • chest pain;
  • severe rash or skin irritation;
  • dizziness, sweating, trouble breathing;
  • pounding heartbeats or fluttering in your chest; or
  • severe pain where the injection is given.

Less serious side effects include:

  • redness, minor pain, itching, swelling, or a hard lump where the injection was given;
  • flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling);
  • double vision;
  • nausea, vomiting, increased urge to urinate or have a bowel movement;
  • weakness, back pain;
  • runny nose;
  • swelling in your hands or feet;
  • vaginal itching or discharge;
  • fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms, sore throat; or
  • white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect glatiramer?

There may be other drugs that can interact with glatiramer. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about glatiramer.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2013 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 5.01. Revision date: 9/13/2012.

Your use of the content provided in this service indicates that you have read, understood and agree to the End-User License Agreement, which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.

First Nurse

First Nurse

Call First Nurse 24 Hours a Day for free health care advice, resources and referrals!

Ames: 515-239-6877
In Iowa: 800-524-6877 

Search health information online in our Mulimedia Health Library.

High Quality Care

Guardian of Excellence

Mary Greeley consistently delivers high quality patient care.

  • 2013 Guardian of Excellence Award for Clinical Quality
  • Grade 'A' Patient Safety from the Leapfrog Group
  • 2013 Top Performer on Key Quality Measures ranking from The Joint Commission
  • Highest percentage bonus of any Iowa hospital in Medicare's quality incentive program

Mary Greeley on Facebook

Like us on Facebook

Patient Privacy | Net Learning for Employees | MGMC PACS for Physicians
Emergency Preparedness

1111 Duff Avenue Ames, IA 50010 - 515-239-2011 - yourhealth.mgmc@mgmc.com

©2014 Mary Greeley Medical Center - All rights reserved.