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Generic Name: Certolizumab pegol

Brands: Cimzia

Class: Biologic; Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF) blocker; monoclonal antibody against TNF

Availability: Prescription needed

Molecular Formula: C2115H3252N556O673S16

Substance UNII: UMD07X179E

What is Cimzia?

Cimzia is an injectable biologic drug known as a monoclonal antibody. It is the brand name of the generic drug certolizumab pegol.

What is Cimzia Used For?

Cimzia can alleviate symptoms of common autoimmune disorders, in which a person’s own immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissues and cells. Conditions treated with Cimzia include:

  • Crohn’s disease and other types of inflammatory bowel disease (if other treatments have failed)
  • Moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
  • Plaque psoriasis
  • Psoriatic arthritis 
  • Ankylosing spondylitis (Bechterew’s disease)

How Does Cimzia Work?

Cimzia blocks the activity of a substance in the body called tumor necrosis factor (TNF), which normally promotes inflammation. Specifically, this medication binds to TNF molecules in the body, therefore neutralizing them. 

Cimzia is injected just beneath the skin.

How Long Does it Take for Cimzia to Work?

Clinical studies suggest that it can take just one week for people taking Cimzia to begin noticing improvements in their autoimmune disease symptoms. But improvements in symptoms can continue to be seen over the course of about three months.

Do Not Use Cimzia If:

There are several situations where this medication may not be the right choice for you. According to the FDA, the following people should not use Cimzia:

  • Anyone with an active infection
  • Anyone preparing to undergo surgery
  • Children

Please note that this list may not be complete, and there may be other situations where Cimzia use is not advisable. 

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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