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As is the case with any other medication, there may be some instances where Cimzia (certolizumab pegol) use is not recommended or usage will have to be adjusted in order to prevent or reduce the risk of negative interactions occurring from other drugs, medical conditions, or even food and drink. Keep reading to learn more about Cimzia interactions.

Drug Interactions

According to the FDA, drugs that may interact with Cimzia include the following.

Please note that this list may not be complete, and other interactions with drugs not listed here may occur.

Note: There are some indications where methotrexate should be given with cimzia. Always talk to your doctor before taking medications with cimzia.

Cimzia and Methotrexate

Research shows that people taking a combination of Cimzia and biological disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (biological DMARDs) like methotrexate may be at an increased risk of serious, sometimes life-threatening infections.

Note: There are some indications where methotrexate should be given with cimzia. Always talk to your doctor before taking medications with cimzia.

Cimzia and Prednisone

Using Cimzia in combination with the steroid medication prednisone may increase the risk of serious or even life-threatening infections.

Certolizumab Pegol and Infliximab 

Infliximab is another common biological DMARD. As mentioned, taking DMARDs with certolizumab pegol may increase the risk of serious infections.

Food Interactions

Sometimes the foods we eat and the beverages we drink can also interact with our medications. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, a person can continue eating their normal diet while taking Cimzia unless otherwise directed by their doctor. However, this fact doesn’t necessarily mean there are no possible interactions between Cimzia and certain types of food. 

Cimzia and Alcohol

For more information, please visit our page on Cimzia and alcohol interactions.

Disease & Conditions Interactions

Sometimes certain medications can increase the risk of negative side effects for patients with certain diseases or other medical conditions. According to the FDA, diseases and medical conditions that are known to negatively interact with Cimzia include:

  • Infections
  • Malignancies (e.g., lymphoma, skin cancer)
  • Hepatitis B
  • Heart failure
  • Diabetes
  • Allergy or hypersensitivity to any ingredients in Cimzia

Please note that this list may not be complete, and there may be other diseases and medical conditions where patients should not take certolizumab pegol.

Cimzia and Coronavirus or COVID-19

Right now, very little is known about Cimzia and other autoimmune drugs and COVID-19. Certain investigational drugs used to treat a novel coronavirus infection or the disease it causes (COVID-19) may interact with Cimzia. People who are prescribed Cimzia may also be at a greater risk of becoming seriously ill with COVID-19 due to the status of their immune system. Those who take this medication and are concerned about their COVID-19 risk should talk to their doctor.

Cimzia and Pregnancy

For more information, please visit our page on Cimzia and pregnancy risks.

Cimzia and Breastfeeding

For more information, please visit our page on Cimzia and pregnancy risks.

Cimzia and Weight Gain

Weight gain isn’t a commonly reported issue associated with Cimzia. However, if a person experiences sudden weight gain while taking this drug, it could indicate fluid retention, a symptom related to heart failure. If you notice sudden weight gain while taking Cimzia, it’s important to talk to your doctor right away.

Cimzia and Psoriasis

According to the FDA, the safety of Cimzia for people with psoriasis is similar to the safety of Cimzia for people with rheumatoid arthritis. In studies on RA, possible adverse reactions include:

  • Upper respiratory tract infections
  • Headaches
  • Hypertension
  • Back pain
  • Fatigue

Certolizumab Pegol and Arrhythmias

A limited amount of research and case studies suggest that the use of certolizumab pegol may induce abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmias) in some people, which may increase the risk of adverse events like heart attack or stroke. 

Other Interactions

Other potential interactions include the following.

Cimzia and Surgery

Because Cimzia affects and modulates the immune system, taking the medication while undergoing surgery may delay healing or increase the risk of surgical complications, including infection. So, people taking Cimzia are often told to stop taking the medication before their surgery. However, patients need to talk to their doctor before discontinuing this medication.

Certolizumab Pegol and Blood Sugar

According to the Arthritis Foundation, research suggests that taking Cimzia may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes in people with inflammatory diseases due to the way the drug helps lower blood sugar. However, any drug that lowers blood sugar may increase the risk of hypoglycemia, or dangerously low blood sugar.

Disclaimer: this article does not constitute or replace medical advice. If you have an emergency or a serious medical question, please contact a medical professional or call 911 immediately. To see our full medical disclaimer, visit our Terms of Use page.


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