brands of IVIG

How Different IVIG Brands Can Affect Your CIDP Healing

IVIG is used to treat CIDP and GBS. However, negative reactions to IVIG brands are often caused by the inactive ingredients in some brands of IVIG and not IVIG itself.

By Shiraz Abbas

IVIG is a form of immunoglobin therapy which consists of a mixture of antibodies (immunoglobulins). It is used to treat a variety of health conditions, principally those related to autoimmune diseases.  IVIG infusion is used to treat CIDP (chronic inflammatory demyelinating neuropathy) and GBS (Guillain-Barre Syndrome). However, not all brands of IVIG work equally and some may have unwanted side effects.

Remember that IVIG is a term for a treatment and it is not the name of a specific brand of medication. When a physician writes a prescription for IVIG, the pharmacy provides the brand of IVIG which the patient’s insurance plan determines. Although no brand has been proven to be more effective than another, their side effects do differ.

IVIG not healing

IVIG is a plasma protein product derived from the pooled human plasma of between 3000 and 10,000 and sometimes as many as a 100,000 healthy donors.  The primary component of IVIG is immune globin G (IgG) in all brands of IVIG besides small amounts of IgA and IgM. It is the differences in other inactive components as well as other properties that can affect patients clinically as well as the overall tolerability of IVIG.

If tolerability is an issue, a different brand of IVIG should be tried. It is common to switch patients from one product to another in order to control side effects. Allergic reaction to IVIG can be related to the IVIG brand medication and not necessarily IVIG itself.

Premeds before IVIG infusion are often necessary because the potential exists for hypersensitivity reaction or anaphylaxis; premedication such as antihistamines, analgesics, antipyretics, hydration and others are often used to help.

Some of the IVIG brand names available in the United States include,

Bivigam

Carimune Powder

Flebogamma

Gammagard Powder

Gammagard Liquid

Gammaked

Gammaplex

Gamunex

Octagam

Privigen

Shiraz Abbas is the founder and manager of the CIDP Neuropathy Support Group. He is also one of the main community educators of IVIG therapy. He resides in Fresno, California. Shiraz can be contacted through our free CIDP advice service at 1-855-782-0574.

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