Chronic Idiopathic Urticaria (CIU) Treatment: Starting XOLAIR (Omalizumab)

What to Expect When You Go for Your Injection

Going for your first XOLAIR injection may bring up mixed emotions—maybe you’ve never done anything like this before.  Here are a few details about what will happen when you arrive at the injection center:

  • Before every injection, patients should read the XOLAIR Medication Guide.
  • Then, the XOLAIR injection is administered by a doctor or nurse who is prepared to manage anaphylaxis [an-uh-fuh-lak-sis]. The XOLAIR injection is given under the skin (subcutaneous) and is a slightly clear, viscous fluid, like syrup.
  • During and after the injection the doctor will watch for signs of anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction.
  • After the injection, you will have to wait for some time while the doctor continues to watch for signs of any side effects.
  • Before you leave the injection center, the doctor will remind you to continue to look for signs of anaphylaxis even during the following days and weeks when not receiving an injection.

About the Actual XOLAIR Injection

While you’re preparing for your XOLAIR injection, one thing that can be helpful would be to understand the details of the injection itself. 

XOLAIR Dosing and Frequency

XOLAIR is given by an injection just under the skin (subcutaneous injection) every 4 weeks. This should be done by your healthcare provider, in a healthcare setting.

  • You will get 1 or more injections per visit, depending on the dose your doctor has prescribed
  • Each injection takes about 5-10 seconds to administer
  • Your healthcare provider will monitor you closely during each injection and for a period of time after your injection(s). He or she will be looking for symptoms of a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis
  • You may not see improvement in your symptoms right after XOLAIR treatment

In patients with CIU, a blood test is not necessary to determine the dose or dosing frequency. Do not decrease or stop taking any of your other hive medicines unless your healthcare providers tell you to.

XOLAIR Subcutaneous Injection

What is the most important information I should know about XOLAIR?

Severe allergic reaction. A severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis can happen when you receive XOLAIR. The reaction can occur after the first dose, or after many doses. It may also occur right after a XOLAIR injection or days later. Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening condition and can lead to death. Go to the nearest emergency room right away if you have any of these symptoms of an allergic reaction:

  • wheezing, shortness of breath, cough, chest tightness, or trouble breathing
  • low blood pressure, dizziness, fainting, rapid or weak heartbeat, anxiety, or feeling of “impending doom”
  • flushing, itching, hives, or feeling warm
  • swelling of the throat or tongue, throat tightness, hoarse voice, or trouble swallowing

Your healthcare provider will monitor you closely for symptoms of an allergic reaction while you are receiving XOLAIR and for a period of time after your injection. Your healthcare provider should talk to you about getting medical treatment if you have symptoms of an allergic reaction after leaving the healthcare provider’s office or treatment center.

Get information when starting XOLAIR with a free Support For You Kit.