Benlysta (belimumab) is biologic therapy that was approved by the FDA to treat systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and lupus nephritis.
Lupus is a debilitating autoimmune disease that can cause severe inflammation in almost every organ and joint in the body. It is not typical for lupus to affect all organ systems at once, but if the disease is not managed appropriately it can lead to severe complications.
One of these complications is when the body attacks the kidneys, leading to lupus nephritis. This causes high levels of protein and blood in the urine and may lead to kidney failure.
It is thought that those with lupus have autoreactive B-cells (a type of white blood cell) that stay in the body longer than usual, and attach to healthy tissues. Most B-cells produce antibodies that fight off germs and infection, but autoreactive B-cells cause tissues to become inflamed and may be a cause of lupus.
Benlysta works by blocking B lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS), the protein that stimulates growth of autoreactive B-cells. By preventing the growth and stimulation of B-cells, and inhibiting their survival, Benlysta helps turn off the body’s autoimmune response, reducing inflammation and lupus symptoms.
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Every 2 weeks, then every 4 weeks
Before your infusion, it is important to drink plenty of water and come to your appointment hydrated. Additionally, you must alert us as soon as possible to any changes in your insurance to ensure that we are still an in-network provider for your infusion therapy.