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.
CNS: nervousness, pain
EENT: conjunctivitis, otitis media, rhinitis, pharyngitis, sinusitis
GI: vomiting, diarrhea, gastroenteritis, oral moniliasis
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
☞ 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.
• 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.
Pharmacologic: monoclonal antibodies
Time/action profile (antibody levels)
|IM||rapid||48 hr||30 days|
Adverse Reactions/Side Effects
Central nervous system
- hypersensitivity reactions including anaphylactoid reactions and anaphylaxis (life-threatening)
Drug-Drug interactionNone known.
- Assess patient for signs of lower respiratory tract disease periodically during therapy.
- Assess patient for signs of anaphylactic reaction (rash, pruritus, laryngeal edema, wheezing) after injection. Epinephrine, antihistamine, and equipment for resuscitation should be readily available.
- Lab Test Considerations: May cause thrombocytopenia. Monitor platelet count periodically during therapy.
Potential Nursing DiagnosesRisk for infection (Indications)
- First dose should be administered before RSV season, then monthly thereafter during RSV season.
- Intramuscular: Contains no preservatives; administer within 6 hr.
- Administer IM injection into the lateral aspect of the thigh. Avoid gluteal muscle to prevent damage to the sciatic nerve.
- Give injections >1 mL as a divided dose.
- Explain to parents/caregivers importance of monthly palivizumab to prevent RSV infection. Injection is administered even if infection is present. Advise parents to read the Information for Patients and Their Caregivers prior to first dose and with each Rx refill; information may have changed.
- Instruct parent to notify health care professional immediately if signs of anaphylactic reaction (severe rash, hives, or itching skin; difficulty breathing; closing of throat; difficulty swallowing; swelling of the lips, tongue, or face; bluish color of skin, lips, or under fingernails; muscle weakness or floppiness; unresponsiveness) or if unusual bleeding or bruising occurs.
- Advise parents to consult health care professional before administering other Rx, OTC, or herbal products to their child.
- Prevention of the serious sequelae of RSV disease in susceptible children.