Adult Medication

Brand Names: US

Orencia; Orencia ClickJect

Brand Names: Canada


What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis.
  • It is used to treat juvenile arthritis.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take this drug?

  • If you have an allergy to abatacept or any other part of this drug.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If you are taking any of these drugs: Adalimumab, certolizumab, etanercept, golimumab, or infliximab.
  • If you are taking anakinra, rituximab, or tocilizumab.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take this drug with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take this drug?

All products:

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take this drug. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • This drug may be used with other drugs to treat your health condition. If you are also taking other drugs, talk with your doctor about the risks and side effects that may happen.
  • Very bad and sometimes deadly allergic side effects have rarely happened. Talk with your doctor.
  • Very bad infections have been reported with use of this drug. If you have any infection, are taking antibiotics now or in the recent past, or have many infections, talk with your doctor.
  • You may have more chance of getting an infection. Some infections have been deadly. Wash hands often. Stay away from people with infections, colds, or flu.
  • You will need a TB (tuberculosis) test before starting this drug.
  • Hepatitis B testing may be done. A hepatitis B infection may get worse during care.
  • Make sure you are up to date with all your vaccines.
  • Talk with your doctor before getting any vaccines while you take this drug and after you stop taking it. Vaccine use with this drug may either raise the chance of an infection or make this drug not work as well. Talk with your doctor.
  • Breathing problems have happened more often in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) when taking this drug. This includes COPD that gets worse, cough, and trouble breathing. Talk with the doctor.
  • This drug may add to the chance of getting some types of cancer. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you are 65 or older, use this drug with care. You could have more side effects.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug while you are pregnant.
  • If you used this drug during pregnancy, tell your baby’s doctor. You will need to discuss the safety and timing of certain vaccines with the doctor.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.


  • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), talk with your doctor about which glucose tests are best to use.
  • Do not give this drug to a child younger than 6 years of age.

Auto-injector shot and prefilled syringes:

  • This drug is not approved for use in children younger than 18 years of age. Talk with the doctor.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of infection like fever, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, or wound that will not heal.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • Flu-like signs.
  • Swelling, warmth, or redness of the skin.
  • Very bad dizziness or passing out.
  • Very bad headache.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • A skin lump or growth.
  • Weight loss.
  • Night sweats.
  • Very bad irritation where this drug is used.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
  • Headache.
  • Signs of a common cold.
  • Nose and throat irritation.
  • Upset stomach.
  • Dizziness.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Belly pain.
  • Back pain.
  • Irritation where this drug is used.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best taken?

Use this drug as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.


  • It is given as an infusion into a vein over a period of time.

Auto-injector shot and prefilled syringes:

  • It is given as a shot into the fatty part of the skin.
  • This drug may be given at home.
  • If you will be giving yourself the shot, your doctor or nurse will teach you how to give the shot.
  • Follow how to use as you have been told by the doctor or read the package insert.
  • Wash your hands before and after you give the shot.
  • Do not use if the solution is cloudy, leaking, or has particles.
  • This drug is colorless to a faint yellow. Do not use if the solution changes color.
  • Let shot sit out for 30 to 60 minutes to warm up before giving it.
  • Move the site where you give the shot with each shot.
  • Do not give into skin that is irritated, bruised, red, infected, or scarred.
  • Throw syringe away after use. Do not use the same syringe more than one time.
  • Throw away needles in a needle/sharp disposal box. Do not reuse needles or other items. When the box is full, follow all local rules for getting rid of it. Talk with a doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Call your doctor to find out what to do.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?


  • If you need to store this drug at home, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.

Auto-injector shot and prefilled syringes:

  • Store in a refrigerator. Do not freeze.
  • Store in original container.
  • Protect from light.

All products:

  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.

General drug facts

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else’s drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

Last Reviewed Date



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