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Generic Name: Belatacept [bel-AT-a-sept] bel-ATa-sept
Name of the Brand: Nulojix
Dosage Format: Intravenous powder for injection (250 mg)
Drug Class: Selective immunosuppressants

What is Belatacept?

Belatacept can weaken your body's immune system to prevent it from "rejecting" a transplanted organ like a kidney. Organ rejection occurs when your immune system views the organ transplant as an intruder and then attacks it.

Belatacept can be used in conjunction with other drugs to avoid organ rejection following a kidney transplant. Belatacept is only prescribed to patients affected by the Epstein-Barr virus (your doctor will examine your blood for confirmation of this). Belatacept can also be used for reasons not mentioned in this guideline.

Side effects of Belatacept

See a doctor immediately. Get medical attention immediately if you notice symptoms that are warning signs of an allergic response, like hives, trouble breathing, or swelling of your lips, face, or tongue.

Belatacept may influence your immune system and trigger certain blood vessels to expand beyond your control. Tell your doctor immediately if you experience:

  • Fever, swollen glands, flu symptoms, night sweats.
  • Stomach discomfort, vomiting, diarrhea, and weight loss.
  • The weakness of the other part of the body; decreased vision, issues with speech or walking.
  • Fluctuations in your state of mind.
  • The urine is bloody and burning when you urinate, or with little or no urination.
  • Discomfort around the transplanted kidney; tenderness around the transplanted kidney.
  • A new skin lesion or an existing mole that has grown or changed color.

Contact your doctor at the earliest opportunity if you are suffering from:

  • Low red blood cells (anemia): pale skin sensation of fatigue, unusually tired feeling, feeling faint or lightheaded, cold hands and feet.
  • High potassium: nausea or fatigue, a tingling feeling, and chest pain. It can also cause irregular heartbeats, a lack of movement.
  • Low potassium: leg cramps, constipation, irregular heartbeats, fluttering of your chest, more frequent urination, or thirst Numbness or tingling in the muscles, becoming weak, or a limp sensation.

Common adverse effects of belatacept could include:

  • High or low potassium.
  • Elevated blood pressure.
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation.
  • Renal or urinary tract infection.
  • Headache.
  • The fever or cough.
  • Swelling in your feet or legs.

This is not a complete list of all the possible side effects. Other side effects could be present. Contact your physician regarding any advice on adverse effects. You can report symptoms to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Belatacept can cause your body to produce white blood cells. This could lead to cancer, a grave cerebrovascular infection that causes disability or even death, or a virus that causes the kidney to stop working. Consult your physician right away if you experience fever, swollen glands, flu-like symptoms, sleepiness, loss of weight, vomiting or diarrhea, burning after you urinate or urinate, urine that is bloody, new skin lesions, any changes in your mental health or vision loss, or any weakness in one part of the body, issues with walking or speaking, or discomfort around the transplant.

Before you take this drug

You shouldn't be treated with belatacept if you're allergic to it or if you've not been exposed to Epstein-Barr viruses. Discuss with your physician the risks and advantages of taking Belatacept. Belatacept can affect the immune system and cause an increase in the production of white blood cells in certain instances. This could lead to cancer, a severe brain infection leading to death or disability, or an infection that causes renal transplant rejection.

Inform your doctor if you were ever diagnosed with:

  • A liver transplant.
  • Cytomegalovirus (CMV).
  • If you're due to get any vaccinations.

It isn't known if belatacept can harm the unborn baby. Notify your doctor if you are pregnant or intend to get pregnant. If you're pregnant or if you're a male and your partner in sex is expecting, your name is registered on a pregnancy registry. This will help track the results of the pregnancy and assess any consequences of Belatacept for the baby. It is not recommended to breastfeed when you are taking Belatacept.

How to take Belatacept?

Belatacept is administered as an infusion into the vein. Your healthcare provider will offer you the injection. Belatacept is best administered slowly. The IV infusion could take a minimum of 30 minutes to be completed. Belatacept is typically given shortly before the transplantation of your kidney, then again five days later, and then once every two to four weeks. Follow your doctor's instructions for dosage extremely carefully. Belatacept may increase the chances of contracting an infection because it alters how your immune system functions. You'll require regular medical tests.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Contact your doctor for advice. If you do not make an appointment to receive the Belatacept shot,

What happens if I overdose?

Get medical attention in an emergency or contact the Poison Help line toll-free at 1-800-222-1222.

What should be avoided?

Avoid exposure to the sun and tanning beds. Belatacept could increase the risk of developing skin cancer. Wear protective clothing and apply sunscreen (SPF 30 or more) whenever you go out in the sun. Don't receive a "live" vaccine while using Belatacept. The vaccine may not function in the same way during this period and could not fully safeguard you against disease. Live vaccines comprise measles, mumps, measles, rubella (MMR), the typhoid virus, polio, rotavirus varicella, yellow fever (chickenpox), and zoster (shingles).

Interaction with other drugs

Other medications may interact with Belatacept. This includes medications that are prescribed and available over the counter, vitamins, and herbal products. Discuss with your doctor your current medications and any medications you begin or stop taking.