Enbrel (Etanercept): Uses, Dosage, Price, Side Effects, Precautions & More

What is Enbrel?

  • Enbrel belongs to a group of drugs called as “anti-inflammatory medicines”.
  • Active ingredient of Enbrel is “Etanercept” and it is available in powder form that is made up into a solution for injection and as prefilled syringes and pens containing a solution for injection.
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Uses of Enbrel

Enbrel is used for the treatment of following conditions –

  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Polyarticular Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis in patients aged 2 years or older
  • Psoriatic Arthritis
  • Ankylosing Spondylitis
  • Plaque Psoriasis
Also Read: Diflucan Uses

How does Enbrel work?

  • The active substance in Enbrel is etanercept.
  • Etanercept is a protein that blocks the activity of tumour necrosis factor (chemical messenger in the body).
  • Tumour necrosis factor is found at high levels in patients suffering from the aforementioned diseases.
  • By blocking tumour necrosis factor, Enbrel reduces the inflammation and other symptoms of the diseases.

Enbrel Price In India

Specifics Enbrel Price
Vial of 25 mg Injection Rs 8700
Vial of 50 mg Injection Rs 17170

How to Take Enbrel?

Enbrel (Etanercept) is given by injection under the skin by a trained healthcare professional.

Common Dosage & when to take Enbrel?

  • The dose and frequency of Enbrel intake depend upon the weight of the patient and initial response to the treatment.
  • For adults, the usual recommended dose is 25 mg two times a week or 50 mg once a week.
  • For patients below 18 years of age, the dose depends on body weight
Also Read: Doxazosin Dosage | Seroquel Dosage

When to avoid Enbrel?

Enbrel (Etanercept) should not be used or should be used with caution in the following conditions:

  • Allergic to any of its components
  • People with liver or kidney problem
  • Active infection
  • Demyelinating disease
  • Heart failure
  • History of hepatitis B
  • diabetes,
  • HIV,
  • weak immune system
  • tuberculosis

Side effects of Enbrel (Etanercept)?

Enbrel may produce multiple side effects, although they may not be common in all the patients. Commonly observed side effects:

  • Infections (including colds, sinusitis, bronchitis, urinary tract infections and skin infections);
  • injection site reactions (including bleeding, bruising, redness, itching, pain, and swelling).
  • Allergic reactions; fever; rash; itching; antibodies directed against normal tissue
  • Serious infections (including pneumonia, deep skin infections, joint infections, blood infection, and infections at various sites);
  • worsening of congestive heart failure;
  • low red blood cell count,
  • low white blood cell count,
  • low neutrophil (a type of white blood cell) count;
  • low blood platelet count;
  • skin cancer (excluding melanoma);
  • localised swelling of the skin (angioedema);
  • hives (elevated patches of red or pale skin that often itch);
  • eye inflammation;
  • psoriasis (new or worsening);
  • inflammation of the blood vessels affecting multiple organs;
  • elevated liver blood tests (in patients also receiving methotrexate treatment, the frequency of elevated liver blood tests is common)

Effects on organs?

Patients with liver and kidney disease should administer Enbrel (Etanercept) with caution and under the observation of a doctor.

Reported Allergic Reactions?

Tell your doctor if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. Allergy with Enbrel may exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Rash
  • Chest tightness
  • Itching
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat

Drug Interactions to Be Careful About?

Drug interactions refer to the effect of drugs on each other and on human body following ingestion. Large numbers of medicine have shown interaction with each other. It is advised that the patient must always inform the physician about all the medicines/over the counter products/vitamin supplements used. Consult your doctor before administering any other drugs concomitantly with Enbrel (Etanercept). All the possible drug interactions might not be listed here. Few important ones include:

  • Abatacept, sulfasalazine or Interleukin-1 antagonists such as anakinra.
  • Cyclophosphamide
  • Some vaccines
  • Digoxin
  • Warfarin
  • Anti-diabetic drugs

Shows Effects / Results In?

  • Enbrel (Etanercept) doesn’t work immediately after oral administration. It may take few days to few weeks for complete recovery.
  • Even if symptoms disappear, it should be taken until advised to stop by the doctor.


Is Enbrel Addictive?

No such tendency has been reported.

Can I have Enbrel with alcohol?

Concomitant administration of Enbrel (Etanercept) with alcohol should be avoided as it may increase the risk of adverse effects like dizziness, drowsiness, confusion and impaired decision making.

Any particular food item to be avoided?

No alteration in its action seen with any food product.

Can I have Enbrel when Pregnant?

  • Enbrel (Etanercept) should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefits justify the risks to the foetus.
  • Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant in the future before initiating Enbrel therapy.

Can I have Enbrel (Etanercept) when feeding a baby?

  • It is not known whether Enbrel is excreted in human milk.
  • Enbrel should be used in breastfeeding women only if the potential benefits outweigh the risks.

Can I drive after taking Enbrel?

Few patients on Enbrel (Etanercept) might exhibit drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion. Such patients should use Enbrel with caution while driving or operating heavy machinery.

What happens if I overdose on Enbrel (Etanercept)?

  • It should not be administered in more than prescribed dose or frequency.
  • Taking more medication or with increased frequency can cause serious toxicity.

What happens if I eat expired Enbrel?

  • The medicine may not work as well as the potency of the medicines decreases and also it may lead to some adverse effects.
  • To be on the safer side, always check and never use an expired drug.

What happens if I miss a dose of Enbrel (Etanercept)?

  • The medicine may not work well if you miss a dose because, for effective working of the drug, a certain amount of drug must be present in your body at all times.
  • Always consume the missed dose as soon as you remember. But, if it is already time for the next dose – do not double the dose.

Storage of Enbrel (Etanercept)

Storage at room temperature away from direct heat and light.

Keep medicines away from children and pets.

Pro Tips When Taking Enbrel

  • Enbrel (Etanercept) should never be stopped abruptly without doctor’s consent.
  • Enbrel can weaken your immune system. Serious and sometimes fatal infections may occur.
  • You must always get a tuberculosis skin test & chest x-ray done before starting Enbrel.
Also Read: Symbicort
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