Managing Your RA
GRETCHEN: Hi. My name is Gretchen. I'm from Missouri, and I'm an ORENCIA patient.
VO: ORENCIA® (abatacept) is a prescription medicine that reduces signs and symptoms in adults with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA), including those who have not been helped enough by other medicines for RA. ORENCIA may prevent further damage to your bones and joints and may help your ability to perform daily activities. In adults, ORENCIA may be used alone or with other RA treatments other than tumor necrosis factor (TNF) antagonists. Please read Important Safety Information at the end of this presentation.
GRETCHEN: My message to give to someone hesitant to start on a biologic treatment would be that I was hesitant at first. I read all about them. I did my research, but it is scary to start a new treatment. One would be to…
GRETCHEN VO: Trust your doctor, to do your own research, ask your questions. And then see.
NANCY: Hi. I'm Nancy from New York, and I'm an ORENCIA patient.
NANCY: My treatment goals for my RA definitely were not being met to my standards. My rheumatologist had been telling me that I was being managed, but there was a day I walked into my classroom. I had difficulty carrying my bag out of my car, but then I got to my classroom door, put my key in the lock, and I absolutely could not turn it…
NANCY VO: …I grabbed my cell phone. I went into the hallway, and I called my office. I want to go on ORENCIA.
NANCY: And she agreed, and I felt that day I really spoke up for myself, and I think that's what I would encourage other patients to do.
AVO: Talk to your doctor and set reasonable expectations and treatment goals. It may take a little while for you to respond to the treatment. Some people see reduction in signs and symptoms sooner than others.
TONY: Hi, I'm Tony…
TONY VO: …from Idaho, and I'm an ORENCIA patient.
TONY: I met a woman who I started walking with at the park who has rheumatoid arthritis…
TONY: …and we started talking about different treatments…
TONY VO: She told me that she was very discouraged with the treatment.
TONY: The medicine wasn't doing her any good, so she decided to go on a natural food diet and tried to take care of herself that way, and I looked at her and I said you need to…
TONY VO: …educate yourself a little bit further, get your attitude changed…
TONY: …about treatments so that you can get on with your life.
AVO: Important Safety Information
Inform your healthcare provider of the following, before you receive treatment with ORENCIA®:
Infections: If you have any kind of infection even if it is small (such as an open cut or sore), an infection that is in your whole body (such as the flu), an infection that will not go away, or a history of infections that keep coming back. ORENCIA may make your immune system less able to fight infections, so you may be more likely to get infections or any infection you have may get worse.
Tuberculosis: If you have had tuberculosis (TB), a positive skin test for TB, or if you recently have been in close contact with someone who has had TB. If you get any of the symptoms of TB (a cough that does not go away, weight loss, fever, night sweats), call your healthcare provider right away. Before you start ORENCIA, your healthcare provider may examine you for TB or perform a skin test.
If you have or have had Viral Hepatitis. Before you use ORENCIA, your healthcare provider may examine you for hepatitis.
If you have a history of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary (lung) Disease (COPD).
If you are scheduled to have Surgery.
Allergies to the Ingredients of ORENCIA: The ingredients of intravenous (IV) ORENCIA are: abatacept, maltose, monobasic sodium phosphate, and sodium chloride for administration. The ingredients of subcutaneous (SC) ORENCIA are: abatacept, sucrose, poloxamer 188, monobasic sodium phosphate monohydrate, dibasic sodium phosphate anhydrous, and water for injection.
Vaccinations: If you have recently received a vaccination or are scheduled for any vaccination. If you are receiving ORENCIA, and for 3 months after you stop receiving ORENCIA, you should not take live vaccines.
Diabetes: If you have diabetes and use a blood glucose monitor to check your sugar levels. The infusion of ORENCIA contains maltose, a sugar that can give falsely high blood glucose readings with some monitors on the day you receive your infusion. Your healthcare provider may tell you to use a different way to monitor your blood sugar levels. ORENCIA for SC injection does not contain maltose; therefore, you do not need to change the way you monitor your blood sugar if you are taking ORENCIA® (abatacept) subcutaneously.
Pregnancy: If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if ORENCIA can harm your unborn baby. If you took ORENCIA during pregnancy, talk to your healthcare provider before your baby receives any vaccines.
Breastfeeding: It is not known if ORENCIA passes into your breastmilk. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby if you use ORENCIA.
If you Take Any Other Kinds of Medicine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
If you are Taking Other Biologic Medicines to Treat RA such as: Enbrel® (etanercept), Humira® (adalimumab), Remicade® (infliximab), Kineret® (anakinra), Rituxan® (rituximab), Simponi® (golimumab), Cimzia® (certolizumab pegol), or Actemra® (tocilizumab). You may have a higher chance of getting a serious infection if you take ORENCIA with other biologic medicines.
Possible Side Effects of ORENCIA (abatacept)
ORENCIA can cause serious side effects including:
• Serious infections. ORENCIA can make you more likely to get infections or make the infection that you have get worse. Some people have died from these infections. Call your healthcare provider immediately if you feel sick or get any of the following signs of infection: fever; feel very tired; cough; feel flu-like; or warm, red or painful skin.
• Allergic reactions. Allergic reactions can happen to people who use ORENCIA. Call your healthcare provider or get emergency medical help right away if you have any symptoms of an allergic reaction, which may include hives; swollen face, eyelids, lips, or tongue; or trouble breathing.
• Hepatitis B infection. If you are a carrier of the hepatitis B virus (a virus that affects the liver), the virus can become active while you use ORENCIA. Your healthcare provider may do a blood test before you start treatment with ORENCIA.
• Vaccinations. You should not receive ORENCIA with certain types of vaccines. ORENCIA may cause some vaccinations to be less effective.
• Respiratory problems in people with COPD. You may get certain respiratory problems more often if you receive ORENCIA and have COPD, including: worsened COPD, cough, or trouble breathing.
Cancer (malignancies). Certain kinds of cancer have been reported in people receiving ORENCIA. It is not known if ORENCIA increases your chance of getting certain kinds of cancer.
Common side effects with ORENCIA are headache, upper respiratory tract infection, sore throat, and nausea.
These are not all the possible side effects of ORENCIA.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Please read the Patient Information in the Full Prescribing Information.
3 steps towards managing
your Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
Follow the 3 steps below to start your journey managing
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA).
Step 1: Assess your RA
The first step in managing your RA is evaluating your symptoms and understanding how your
RA is affecting you. Take the RA assessment
and bring the discussion guide with you to your next appointment.
Step 2: Talk to your doctor
Your rheumatologist is your best resource
when facing RA. Heading to your appointment educated and prepared can help ensure an
open and productive conversation.
Step 3: Sign up for
We know how difficult it can be to deal with RA, which is why we have
ORENCIA® (abatacept) On Call™ and other patient support services that can help
with the issues that matter to you. ORENCIA support services may include:
- 24/7 assistance from a personal Care Counselor*†
- Co-pay and financial support
- Help with insurance questions
- Talking to a trained nurse*†
- Self-injection services
- Live Chat†
*Neither the Care Counselor nor the nurse can provide medical
Your rheumatologist is the best source of information
about your health.
†Live Chat is available 8 AM to midnight EST. ORENCIA Care Counselors are available 24/7 at 1-800-ORENCIA. ORENCIA nurses are available for assistance Monday through Friday, 8 AM
to 8 PM EST. At all other times, nurses will usually return your calls within 30 to 60 minutes. Response times may vary in Puerto Rico.