STELARA® is a leading treatment for for psoriatic arthritis, psoriasis, ulcerative disease, plaque arthritis, and Crohn’s disease. It is an immunosuppressant drug and is the leading treatment for autoimmune disorders like these. If your doctor prescribes a STELARA infusion, there are a few things you can do to prepare for your appointment.
What is STELARA?
STELARA (ustekinumab) is a biologic medication. It is designed to reduce inflammation, which is why it is so effective for autoimmune disorders. Typically, doctors will prescribe a STELARA infusion after someone has already not responded to a different medication.
When STELARA enters the body, it works to block two types of inflammation proteins known as IL-12 and IL-23. Currently, it is the only biologic to target these two proteins. Since these proteins are thought to cause inflammation, targeting the proteins can help to alleviate symptoms of inflammatory diseases.
Because STELARA is a biologic, it can take several months for it to take effect. If you don’t notice the results immediately, don’t panic. Normally, biologics are used over the long run.
Unlike some medications, STELARA has been on the market for more than 10 years. Clinical research initially began more than 19 years ago. Since it was first developed, more than 425,000 patients have been treated with STELARA.
What Does STELARA Treat?
STELARA is prescribed for for psoriatic arthritis, Crohn’s disease, plaque psoriasis, and ulcerative colitis. It targets IL-12 and IL-23 proteins, which are higher in certain inflammatory diseases. By reducing the levels of these proteins, STELARA alleviates symptoms of these autoimmune disorders over time.
While Stelara treats these conditions, it is important to understand that it also suppresses the immune system.. It is important to talk to your doctor about any infections you have as well as any new symptoms you experience during the treatment process.
STELARA for Crohn’s Disease
56% of people who were mostly new to biologics and 34% of Crohn’s disease patients who failed a biologic experience some level of symptom relief while using STELARA. STELARA for Crohn’s Disease is given as an intravenous (IV) infusion, and the dose is based on your weight. After the initial treatment, you are given maintenance doses every eight weeks.
STELARA for Ulcerative Colitis
STELARA for ulcerative colitis is also given as an IV infusion. Following your initial dose, you will return every eight weeks for a subsequent maintenance dose. It is intended for people who have mild to severe ulcerative colitis.
STELARA for Plaque Psoriasis
When prescribed STELARA for psoriasis, you will typically receive your second subcutaneous dose just four weeks after your first subcutaneous dose. Afterward, maintenance doses are given every 12 weeks. Pediatric patients between the ages of 6 and 17 can also be given smaller doses on the same timetable.
STELARA for Psoriatic Psoriasis
For psoriatic psoriasis, STELARA is administered as an injection. After the initial injection, you will receive another dose four weeks later. Following this, each injection happens 12 weeks apart.
How Does STELARA Work?
A STELARA infusion is a prescription medication you can get from your doctor. When they prescribe it, you’ll be referred to receive your infusion treatment at your provider of choice. Infusion for Health is the most trusted and reputable treatment provider with multiple convenient locations.
Currently, STELARA is the only medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for IL-12 and IL-23. These proteins are both linked to inflammation. By reducing these proteins, STELARA is thought to alleviate the symptoms of Crohn’s disease, psoriatic arthritis, and other autoimmune disorders.
How Much Does STELARA Cost?
As an injection, STELARA can cost over $10,000. Infusions can cost more than $25,000. These prices are typically before the added costs involved in going to a treatment center.
Fortunately, there are ways to make the cost of a STELARA infusion more affordable. Your insurance may cover a large portion of your treatment cost. The STELARA withME program offered by STELARA can also reduce medication costs to as low as $5 for qualifying patients.
At Infusion for Health, you can also get assistance figuring out what kind of financial aid you are eligible for. A financial counselor will help you learn about the kind of patient financial assistance programs and pharmaceutical rebates you can get to cover the cost of care. With the right help, you can lower your out-of-pocket cost as much as possible.
Learn More About STELARA
If you or a loved one suffers from an autoimmune disorder, a STELARA infusion may be able to help. This medication is specifically designed for people who have had a biologic failure before. However, it is also a successful treatment for people who are trying biologics for the first time.
To learn more about STELARA®, reach out to Infusion for Health today. You can also talk to your doctor about getting referred to one of our convenient treatment center locations.