Infusion therapy offers hope for many individuals suffering from debilitating autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis. Infusion therapy plays a vital role in the treatment of conditions like osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. In some cases, infusion therapy is more effective than oral medications. For patients embarking on this journey, it's important to have a clear understanding of what to expect.

Pre-treatment Assessment

Before starting infusion therapy, you typically undergo a comprehensive assessment to determine the most appropriate medication, dosage, and infusion schedule based on your medical history, disease severity, and other factors.

How Is Infusion Therapy Administered?

An IV catheter is inserted into a vein, usually in the arm or hand, to provide access for the infusion. The medication is then administered slowly and continuously through the IV catheter using an infusion pump or gravity drip system. The infusion rate may be adjusted based on the medication being administered and the patient's comfort.

Benefits of Infusion Therapy

  • Enhanced Bioavailability: Medications administered via infusion therapy bypass the digestive system, ensuring optimal absorption and bioavailability.
  • Targeted Delivery: Infusion therapy delivers medications directly into the bloodstream, allowing for precise targeting of affected tissues or cells.
  • Consistent Blood Levels: Infusion therapy provides a controlled and consistent delivery of medication over time, maintaining stable blood levels.
  • Rapid Onset of Action: Medications administered via infusion therapy may have a faster onset of action which is particularly beneficial for managing acute flares or severe symptoms associated with autoimmune diseases.
  • Reduced Risk of Medication Interactions: Infusion therapy minimizes the risk of drug interactions that may occur when multiple medications are taken orally.

How Often Do You Need to Get Infusion Therapy?

The infusion therapy interval depends on the medication. Typically it is administered every two, four, or eight weeks up to once yearly depending on symptoms and the medication administered. Regular follow-ups may be required to assess treatment response and adjust the treatment plan as needed.

Infusion therapy is a safe and well-established treatment option that has helped countless individuals regain control over their health. If you're considering infusion therapy, discuss it with a board-certified rheumatologist to determine if it's the right choice for your treatment plan.

Illinois Bone & Joint Institute offers world-class orthopedic care across Chicago and Indiana, with over 100 convenient locations and expertise in every orthopedic specialty. We offer personalized solutions and cutting-edge treatments to help you move better, so you can live better.

About the Author
Angela R. Crowley, MD is a board-certified, fellowship-trained rheumatologist at Illinois Bone & Joint Institute.

Please wait...