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What should I know before taking fingolimod (Gilenya)?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Your doctor may need to do an eye exam, a complete blood count, electrocardiogram (EKG), liver function test, and a blood test to check your immunity to the varicella zoster virus before starting treatment.

If you have had a heart attack, stroke, or transient ischemic attack (TIA) in the past 6 months, you should not take fingolimod. If you have heart block or a prolonged QT interval, you should not take fingolimod.

If you have had class III or IV heart failure or were hospitalized in the last 6 months for heart failure you should not take fingolimod.

If you have impaired liver function, fingolimod may not be a good option for you.

Fingolimod may not be a good option for you if you are pregnant, may be pregnant, or are planning a pregnancy. It is not known if it is safe for pregnant women.

If you are breastfeeding, fingolimod may not be a good option for you. It is not known if this drug can be passed into breast milk.

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.