Uses of Xolair

Xolair (Omalizumab) belongs to a class of medications called “biologic therapies”.  Xolair acts early in the allergic-inflammatory process in people with allergic asthma by blocking the allergy antibody IgE from causing the reactions that can lead to asthma attacks and symptoms.

Xolair is a medication used to treat very severe allergic asthma.  Usually after being on this medication for a period of time, asthma symptoms improve and patients can decrease the use of some of their asthma medications.

Taking Xolair

This medication is administered as a subcutaneous (under the skin) injection. Xolair injections are usually given once or twice a month.  The dose is based on one’s allergy antibody level and weight.  The injections are usually administered at your allergist’s office, but they can be given under the direction of a home health care company at your home.  Your physician will help decide how long to take this medication based on your response and level of asthma control.

Do not discontinue any of your asthma medications after starting Xolair without first speaking to your physician.

Xolair Side Effects and Warnings

Xolair is usually well tolerated.  The most common reported side effects include, but are not limited to:

  • Injection-site reaction
  • Viral infections
  • Upper respiratory tract infection
  • Sinusitis
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • A rare side effect reported with Xolair is anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction).

Malignant neoplasm was observed in 20 of 4127 (0.5%) patients treated with XOLAIR compared with 5 of 2236 (0.2%) control patients in clinical studies.

  • The observed malignancies in patients treated with XOLAIR were a variety of types, with breast, non-melanoma skin, prostate, melanoma, and parotid occurring more than once, and five other types occurring once each.
  • The majority of patients were observed for less than 1 year
  • The impact of longer exposure to XOLAIR or use in patients at higher risk of malignancy is unknown


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