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What is rituximab?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Rituximab (Rituxan) is a biologic drug, a man-made copy of an antibody that blocks certain cells in the immune system (B cells) that play a role in rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It is given as 2 IV infusions 2 weeks apart. Because it sometimes causes serious side effects, rituximab is usually prescribed only for people whose RA has not been controlled with DMARDs and TNF inhibitors and who have had a positive lab test for rheumatoid factor. It is usually prescribed along with methotrexate. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.