Reform ABQ: Monoclonal Antibody Therapy
Updated: Jun 21, 2022
Monoclonal Antibodies Are Here!
To better serve our community Reform ABQ has joined the New Mexico Department of Health to offer monoclonal antibodies. If you’ve tested positive for COVID-19, monoclonal antibodies may reduce the risk of developing severe illness that requires an emergency room visit or a lengthy stay in the hospital.
What are monoclonal antibodies and how do they work?
Monoclonal antibodies are man-made antibodies that mimic our natural immune system’s ability to fight viruses. Monoclonal antibodies "look for" and attach to the spike protein of the coronavirus, once attached to the spike protein the antibodies inhibit the virus’s ability to enter their targeted cells — and slow down the infection.
There are currently three monoclonal antibody treatments authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). These treatments are Bamlanivimab/Etesevimab, Casirivimab/Imdevimab and Sotrovimab. Although they are currently considered an investigational medicine, preliminary research suggests monoclonal antibodies may be effective in treating mild to moderate cases of COVID-19 to reduce the risk of hospitalization and death but is not a substitute for vaccination.
More information on these particular treatments visit the links provided below:
How are monoclonal antibodies administered?
The antibodies are administered as one-time treatment via intravenous injection (IV) or through a series of injections under the skin – the route of administration will vary depending on the type of antibodies given. After the treatment, you must be observed for an hour to ensure you don’t develop any adverse side effects.
What are the potential side effects?
Monoclonal antibody treatments can cause allergic reactions, such as anaphylaxis and infusion or injection-related reactions such as, rash, diarrhea, nausea, dizziness, and itching. Injection site reactions such as bruising, and redness have been reported in patients who receive subcutaneous administration.
Who is eligible for monoclonal antibody treatment?
Monoclonal antibody treatment is reserved for individuals who (regardless of vaccination status):
Are considered high risk for developing severe COVID-19 and
Have tested positive for COVID-19 or been exposed to someone who has COVID-19 and
Are 12 and older and weigh at least 88 lbs.
Why should I receive monoclonal antibodies?
Clinical trials for monoclonal antibodies have shown that patients who receive the treatment are at least 70% less likely to be hospitalized or require an emergency room visit. Treatment has also shown a noted decrease in the amount of virus in an infected person’s blood.
My symptoms aren’t that bad. Can’t I wait until symptoms worsen?
Monoclonal antibody treatment is not appropriate for patients with severe disease or those who are hospitalized due to COVID-19. There is no benefit from this treatment if you have severe COVID-19 or have progressed to the need of hospitalization - The earlier the treatment the better!
Please call our office to schedule your monoclonal antibody treatment today! If you are in need of a COVID-19 test our office can get you tested as well.