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a monoclonal antibody against respiratory syncytial virus, used as a passive immunizing agent against infection with the virus in susceptible infants and children; administered intramuscularly.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.



Pharmacologic class: Monoclonal antibody

Therapeutic class: Immunologic agent

Pregnancy risk category C


Neutralizes and suppresses activity of syncytial virus in respiratory tract, inhibiting respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) replication


Injection: 50 mg, 100-mg vial

Indications and dosages

To prevent serious lower respiratory disease caused by RSV in high-risk children

Children: 15 mg/kg I.M. q month throughout RSV season


• Hypersensitivity to drug or its components


Use cautiously in:

• thrombocytopenia, coagulation disorders, established RSV infection.


Keep epinephrine 1:1,000 available in case anaphylaxis occurs. (However, drug isn't known to cause anaphylaxis.)

• Dilute in sterile water for injection. Gently swirl for 30 seconds to avoid foaming.

• Keep reconstituted solution at room temperature for at least 20 minutes before administering. Give within 6 hours of reconstitution.

• Inject I.M. into anterolateral thigh. Avoid gluteal injection, which may damage sciatic nerve.

Adverse reactions

CNS: nervousness, pain

EENT: conjunctivitis, otitis media, rhinitis, pharyngitis, sinusitis

GI: vomiting, diarrhea, gastroenteritis, oral moniliasis

Hematologic: anemia

Respiratory: upper respiratory tract infection, cough, wheezing, dyspnea, bronchiolitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, croup, asthma, apnea

Skin: rash, fungal dermatitis, eczema

Other: hernia, pain, fever, injection site reaction, viral infection, flulike symptoms, failure to thrive


Drug-diagnostic tests. Alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase: increased levels

Hemoglobin: decreased level Immunological-based RSV diagnostic tests: interference, possibly leading to false-negative test results

Patient monitoring

Watch closely for signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis immediately after dosing.

• Assess for signs and symptoms of infection, particularly EENT and respiratory infection.

• Monitor liver function tests and CBC.

• Assess patient's weight and hydration status.

Patient teaching

• Tell parent that monthly injections are necessary during RSV season (November through April).

• Inform parent that drug may cause GI symptoms and failure to thrive. Provide dietary consultation as needed.

Caution parent that EENT and respiratory infections may follow administration. Advise parent to contact pre-scriber immediately if child has fever or other signs or symptoms of infection.

• As appropriate, review all other significant and life-threatening adverse reactions and interactions, especially those related to the tests mentioned above.

McGraw-Hill Nurse's Drug Handbook, 7th Ed. Copyright © 2013 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved


Synagis® Immunology A humanized monoclonal antibody used as prophylaxis against RSV infection Adverse effects Fever pneumonia, and injection site reactions. See Respiratory syncytical virus.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Palivizumab prophylaxis was first shown to reduce RSV-associated hospitalization by 39-78% in premature infants and in children with CLD/BPD in a multinational randomized controlled trial [3].
RSV management includes education of parents on how to prevent infection, the implementation of good hand hygiene, and/or the monthly administration of palivizumab (a monoclonal antibody against the RSV-F protein) during the RSV season [6].
Palivizumab immunoprophylaxis is the only available measure to prevent severe RSV disease.
This involves using good environmental hygiene practices and, for children at high risk for severe disease, administering palivizumab, a humanized monoclonal antibody and the only available licensed product for high-risk children.
The treatment, motavizumab, was designed to replace Synagis, also known as palivizumab, before it loses patent protection in 2015.
Palivizumab, a respiratory syncytial virus immunoglobulin preparation, is recommended for certain infants with prematurity and chronic lung disease.
MedImmune actively markets four products, Synagis(R) (palivizumab), Ethyol(R) (amifostine), FluMist(TM) (Influenza Virus Vaccine Live, Intranasal), and CytoGam(R) (cytomegalovirus immune globulin intravenous (human)), and has additional products in clinical testing.
to be a national specialty pharmaceutical distributor of its drug Synagis (palivizumab).