This medication is used to treat certain types of arthritis (rheumatoid arthritis, arthritis of the spine, psoriatic arthritis), certain bowel diseases (Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis), and a certain severe skin disease (chronic plaque psoriasis). In these conditions, the body's defense system (immune system) attacks healthy tissues. Infliximab works by blocking the actions of a certain natural substance (tumor necrosis factor alpha) in the body. This helps to decrease swelling (inflammation) and weaken your immune system, thereby slowing or stopping the damage from the disease.
See also Warning section. Headache, stomach pain, or nausea may occur. If these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: pain/swelling at injection site, joint/muscle pain, swelling ankles/feet, easy bruising/bleeding, vision changes, seizures, confusion, muscle weakness, numbness/tingling of arms/legs, butterfly-shaped facial rash, chest pain, pain/redness/swelling of arms or legs, shortness of breath, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop signs of infection while using this drug, such as: fever, chills, night sweats, persistent cough, persistent sore throat, trouble breathing, painful/frequent urination, unusual vaginal discharge, white patches in the mouth (oral thrush). This drug may rarely cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease. Most cases occur 2 weeks to more than a year after starting infliximab. Tell your doctor immediately if you develop symptoms of liver disease, including dark urine, extreme tiredness, severe stomach/abdominal pain, or yellowing eyes/skin. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing, difficulty swallowing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.