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ankylosing spondylitis

Self-Injection Videos

How to inject Cosentyx

December 5, 2017
How to inject Consentyx

Continuing with our self-injection series, Dr. Farrell teaches us how to inject Cosentyx. Cosentyx, also known as secukinumab, is a monoclonal antibody that blocks interleukin-17. This is a cytokine that is overactive in diseases such as psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis.  That being said, Cosentyx is FDA approved for ankylosing spondylitis, moderate to severe plaque psoriasis, and psoriatic arthritis.  Cosentyx comes as a pen or autoinjector as well as the prefilled syringe.  It also comes in two different doses: 150 mg and 300 mg.

Preparing for your injection

  • Keep your medication stored in the refrigerator until use
    • Before injecting medication, take the autoinjector or prefilled syringe out of the refrigerator.
    • Allow it to warm up to room temperature.
  • Pick a place in your house that is clean and has room for your materials (such as the kitchen table).
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with either:
    • Soap & water
    • Hand sanitizer
  • Choose an area to inject – Thigh or Stomach.
    • Choose an area that is intact and clear.
    • It should not have any of the following:
      • Cuts
      • Scrapes
      • Bruises
      • Psoriasis patches
      • If you have extensive psoriasis, inject between patches
      • Moles
      • Scars
    • Please rotate area each time you inject (shown in picture below).

Areas to inject subcutaneous medication

  • Cleanse chosen area
    • Cleanse chosen area with either of the following:
      • Alcohol swab
      • Alcohol and a cotton ball
    • Use the chosen alcohol material to “swipe” area
      • Can either use a circular motion or wipe in “strips”
      • Allow the area to dry

Injecting Consentyx with an autoinjector/pen

  • Observe the medication in the window to be sure that it is clear (no cloudiness or crystals)
    • You will see a small air bubble within the window, this is normal and will not cause harm when injecting
  • Remove the cap
  • Press the tip of the auto-injector down in the skin at a 90 degree angle until it is flush with the skin
  • Press button and hold for 15 seconds
  • Viewing window will turn yellow or blue, but continue to hold the button for the full 15 seconds
  • Lift the auto-injector straight up

Injecting Consentyx with a prefilled syringe

  • Pull off the cap and observe the syringe to be sure that it is clear (no cloudiness or crystals)
  • Pinch the skin around the injection site and enter at a 45-degree angle
  • Press the plunger (slowly) to administer the medication
  • Once the medication is fully administered, the plunger will reach the bottom and a spring will place a cover over the needle

After the injection

  • Properly dispose of the entire autoinjector/pen or prefilled syringe
    • Sharps Container
      • Can be purchased at your local pharmacy
      • Disposal
      • Hospitals may take full sharps containers, ask first.
      • Pharmacies and Doctors’ offices are not allowed to take used syringes or needle
  • Discard remaining materials in the trash (cap, alcohol swabs, etc.)

For more information regarding Cosentyx, please follow this link.

Credits

Jessica Farrell, PharmD.  Clinical Pharmacist, The Center for Rheumatology/Associate Professor, Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

With the help of Autumn Koniowka. Doctor of Pharmacy Candidate Class of 2018, Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, and Megan Phillips. Doctor of Pharmacy Candidate Class of 2018, Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

A special thanks to Tammy Garren, PhD. Instructional Designer, Center for Innovative Learning, Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

Injection site image: By British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT). Download this book for free at http://open.bccampus.ca [CC BY 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Medical Disclaimer

This information is offered to educate the general public. The information posted on this website does not replace professional medical advice, but for general information purposes only. There is no Doctor – Patient relationship established. We strongly advised you to speak with your medical professional if you have questions concerning your symptoms, diagnosis and treatment.

Diseases and Conditions When to see a rheumatologist

What is autoimmune back pain?

December 26, 2016
What is autoimmune back pain

Let’s face it, back pain is terrible and unfortunately for us, very common.  According to the 2016 Global Burden of Disease Study, low back pain is the number one cause for disability globally.

So we know back pain is common and debilitating, but the question is, what is the difference between regular and autoimmune back pain?

There are two broad categories: mechanical back pain and inflammatory or autoimmune back pain.  Many but not all autoimmune diseases cause back pain.  For example, rheumatoid arthritis usually does not cause back pain.  Sometimes these disease are very difficult to diagnosis because they progress very slowly.  Often times it takes years to decades to diagnose.  Yes you heard me, DECADES.  Unfortunately, if left untreated, it can cause irreversible spinal damage: joint erosions and spinal fusion also known as ankylosis.  Prompt treatment with a disease modifying anti-rheumatic agent (DMARD) often can slowdown or prevent joint damage.

Autoimmune back pain

As I was mentioning before, mechanical and autoimmune back pain are completely different.  Mechanical back usually improves with rest, worsens with strenuous activity, and usually begins later in life.  People that have autoimmune back pain experience the opposite.  Here are some of the key features.

  • Usually pain starts during the 2nd or 3rd decade of life.  People usually experience symptoms before the age of 45
  • Onset is gradual for the most part
  • Symptoms have been ongoing for more than 3 months
  • Exercise improves the pain
  • Rest really doesn’t help.  The pain usually worsens with rest
  • Anti-inflammatory medications like naproxen or ibuprofen helps the pain
  • Pain wakes you up during the second half of the night
  • Pain and prolonged stiffness in the morning. Typically, stiffness lasts more than one hour
  • Alternating deep buttock pain

Risk factors

Autoimmune disease rarely occur in isolation.  The following are some of the risk factors pointing towards a diagnosis of autoimmune back pain.

  • Personal history of uveitis. This is a type of inflammatory condition that affects the eye.
  • A personal history of psoriasis.
  • Having a history of dactylitis in your finger or your toes, aka “sausage digitis”.
  • History of inflammatory arthritis: redness, swelling, and stiffness in any joint
  • Any first degree relative with any spondyloarthritis (SpA)-associated condition? This means mom, dad, siblings, or your children.  SpA-associated conditions include:
    • Axial spondylitis also known as ankylosing spondylitis
    • Psoriasis
    • Psoriatic arthritis
    • Reactive arthritis
    • Crohn’s disease
    • Ulcerative colitis

If you think you could be suffering from autoimmune back pain, please seek your local rheumatologist.  But do not jump to conclusions.  There are many other diseases that can mimic inflammatory back pain that are not autoimmune in nature.

References

Vos T, et al. Global, regional, and national incidence, prevalence, and years lived with disability for 310 diseases and injuries, 1990-2015: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2015. Lancet. 2016 Oct 8;388(10053):1545-1602.

Sieper J, et al. The Assessment of SpondyloArthritis international Society (ASAS) handbook: a guide to assess spondyloarthritis. Ann Rheum Dis. 2009 Jun; Suppl 2:ii1-44.

http://www.asas-group.org/publications/ASAS-handbook.pdf

Medical Disclaimer

This information is offered to educate the general public. The information posted on this website does not replace professional medical advice, but for general information purposes only. There is no Doctor – Patient relationship established. We strongly advised you to speak with your medical professional if you have questions concerning your symptoms, diagnosis and treatment.

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