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What are the side effects of Alemtuzumab?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Alemtuzumab has many side effects. The most common include headache, fatigue, fever, inflamed sinuses and throat, upper respiratory infections, insomnia, numbness or tingling, skin rash, hives, itching, nausea, diarrhea, yeast infections in the mouth or vagina, urinary tract infections, and joint, limb, or back pain.

Some people have potentially fatal reactions to alemtuzumab infusions. The drug affects the immune system and raises the risk of serious infections, blood disorders, autoimmune conditions, and cancer. Medications to prevent certain infections are usually given during alemtuzumab therapy. People taking alemtuzumab should not receive live vaccines. 

This answer was adapted from Sharecare's award-winning AskMD app. Start a consultation now to find out what's causing your symptoms, learn how to manage a condition, or find a doctor.

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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.