Rabies Immune Globulin

Rabies Immune Globulin

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  • Fever
  • Pain, soreness, tenderness, or stiffness of the muscles at the place(s) of injection—may last for several hours after the injection(s)

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Proper Use

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor’s orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For injection dosage form:
    • For preventing rabies infection:
      • Adults and children—The dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 20 International Units (IU) per kilogram (kg) (9.1 IU per pound) of body weight. This medicine is injected into the buttocks (gluteal) muscle and may also be injected around the areas of any wounds caused by the animal with rabies. This medicine is usually used on the first day of your rabies treatment along with the first dose of rabies vaccine. If this medicine is not used on the first day, it may be used any day up through the seventh day of your rabies treatment.

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Although there is no specific information comparing use of rabies immune globulin in children with use in other age groups, this medicine is not expected to cause different side effects or problems in children than it does in adults.

Geriatric

Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of rabies immune globulin in the elderly with use in other age groups.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters C Animal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.

Breastfeeding

Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Immunoglobulin A (IgA) deficiencies—Rabies immune globulin may cause an allergic reaction to occur

Description

Rabies immune globulin is used along with rabies vaccine to prevent infection caused by the rabies virus. Rabies immune globulin works by giving your body the antibodies it needs to protect it against the rabies virus. This is called passive protection. This passive protection lasts long enough to protect your body until your body can produce its own antibodies against the rabies virus.

Rabies immune globulin is given to persons who have been exposed (for example, by a bite, scratch, or lick) to an animal that is known, or thought, to have rabies. This is called post-exposure prophylaxis. Rabies immune globulin is used only in persons who have never before received the rabies vaccine.

Rabies infection is a serious, and often fatal, infection. In the U.S., rabies in wild animals, especially raccoons, skunks, and bats, accounts for most cases of rabies passed on to humans, pets, and other domestic animals. In Canada, the animals most often infected with rabies are foxes, skunks, bats, dogs, and cats. Horses, swine, and cattle also have been known to become infected with rabies. In much of the rest of the world, including Latin America, Africa, and Asia, dogs account for most cases of rabies passed on to humans.

If you are being (or will be) treated for a possible rabies infection while traveling outside of the U.S. or Canada, contact your doctor as soon as you return to the U.S. or Canada, since it may be necessary for you to have additional treatment.

Rabies immune globulin is to be administered only by or under the supervision of your doctor or other health care professional.

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