STELARA® (ustekinumab) Affordability Information
Patient Affordability Options
STELARA® affordability options for eligible patients
STELARA® is indicated for the treatment of adult patients (18 years or older) with active psoriatic arthritis. STELARA® can be used alone or in combination with methotrexate (MTX).
STELARA® is indicated for the treatment of adult patients (18 years or older) with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis who are candidates for phototherapy or systemic therapy.
STELARA®, available as 45 mg and 90 mg, is a subcutaneous injection intended for use under the guidance and supervision of a physician with patients who will be closely monitored and have regular follow-up. Patients may self-inject with STELARA® after physician approval and proper training. Patients should be instructed to follow the directions provided in the Medication Guide.
STELARA® (ustekinumab) may increase the risk of infections and reactivation of latent infections. Serious bacterial, fungal, and viral infections, some requiring hospitalization, were reported. Serious infections included diverticulitis, cellulitis, pneumonia, appendicitis, cholecystitis, sepsis, osteomyelitis, viral infections, gastroenteritis and urinary tract infections.
STELARA® should not be given to patients with a clinically important active infection and should not be administered until the infection resolves or is adequately treated. Instruct patients to seek medical advice if signs or symptoms suggestive of an infection occur. Exercise caution when considering use of STELARA® in patients with a chronic infection or a history of recurrent infection.
Theoretical Risk for Vulnerability to Particular Infections
Individuals genetically deficient in IL-12/IL-23 are particularly vulnerable to disseminated infections from mycobacteria, Salmonella, and Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG) vaccinations. Serious infections and fatal outcomes have been reported in such patients. It is not known whether patients with pharmacologic blockade of IL-12/IL-23 from treatment with STELARA® will be susceptible to these types of infections. Consider appropriate diagnostic testing as dictated by clinical circumstances.
Pre-Treatment Evaluation of Tuberculosis (TB)
Evaluate patients for TB prior to initiating treatment with STELARA®. STELARA® should not be given to patients with active TB. Initiate treatment of latent TB before administering STELARA®. Patients should be monitored closely for signs and symptoms of active TB during and after treatment with STELARA®.
STELARA® is an immunosuppressant and may increase the risk of malignancy. Malignancies were reported among patients who received STELARA® in clinical studies. The safety of STELARA® has not been evaluated in patients who have a history of malignancy or who have a known malignancy.
There have been reports of the rapid appearance of multiple cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas in patients receiving STELARA® who had risk factors for developing non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC). All patients receiving STELARA®, especially those >60 years or those with a history of PUVA or prolonged immunosuppressant treatment, should be monitored for the appearance of NMSC.
STELARA® is contraindicated in patients with clinically significant hypersensitivity to ustekinumab or excipients. Hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylaxis and angioedema, have been reported. If an anaphylactic or other clinically significant hypersensitivity reaction occurs, institute appropriate therapy and discontinue STELARA®.
Reversible Posterior Leukoencephalopathy Syndrome (RPLS)
One case of RPLS has been reported in a STELARA®-treated patient. If RPLS is suspected, administer appropriate treatment and discontinue STELARA®.
RPLS is a neurological disorder, which is not caused by an infection or demyelination. RPLS can present with headache, seizures, confusion, and visual disturbances. RPLS has been associated with fatal outcomes.
Prior to initiating therapy with STELARA®, patients should receive all immunizations recommended by current guidelines. Patients being treated with STELARA® should not receive live vaccines. BCG vaccines should not be given during treatment or within one year of initiating or discontinuing STELARA®. Exercise caution when administering live vaccines to household contacts of STELARA® patients, as shedding and subsequent transmission to STELARA® patients may occur. Non-live vaccinations received during a course of STELARA® may not elicit an immune response sufficient to prevent disease.
The safety of STELARA® in combination with other immunosuppressive agents or phototherapy has not been evaluated. Ultraviolet-induced skin cancers developed earlier and more frequently in mice. In psoriasis studies, the relevance of findings in mouse models for malignancy risk in humans is unknown. In psoriatic arthritis studies, concomitant MTX use did not appear to influence the safety or efficacy of STELARA®.
STELARA® may decrease the protective effect of allergen immunotherapy (decrease tolerance) which may increase the risk of an allergic reaction to a dose of allergen immunotherapy. Therefore, caution should be exercised in patients receiving or who have received allergen immunotherapy, particularly for anaphylaxis.
Most Common Adverse Reactions
The most common adverse reactions (≥3% and higher than that with placebo) in psoriasis clinical trials for STELARA® 45 mg, STELARA® 90 mg, or placebo were: nasopharyngitis (8%, 7%, 8%), upper respiratory tract infection (5%, 4%, 5%), headache (5%, 5%, 3%), and fatigue (3%, 3%, 2%), respectively. In psoriatic arthritis (PsA) studies, a higher incidence of arthralgia and nausea was observed in patients treated with STELARA® when compared with placebo (3% vs 1% for both).