Subcutaneous immunoglobulin replacement therapy with Hizentra, the first 20% SCIG preparation: a practical approach.
To reduce the risk of infection in adults and children with primary immunodeficiencies, replacement therapy with IgG, which can be administered to patients intravenously or subcutaneously, is required. Although intravenous administration of IgG (IVIG) has been the therapy of choice in the US and widely used in Europe for many years, subcutaneous administration of IgG (SCIG) has recently gained considerable acceptance among patients and doctors. SCIG therapy achieves high and stable serum IgG levels, is well tolerated, and can be self-administered. Hizentra (IgPro20; CSL Behring, Berne, Switzerland) is the first, ready-to-use 20% liquid preparation of human IgG specifically formulated for subcutaneous infusions. The high concentration (20%) might allow shorter infusion times due to smaller infusion volumes, with potential improvement in the convenience of SCIG therapy. Hizentra is well tolerated and has been shown to protect adult and pediatric primary immunodeficiency patients against serious bacterial infections. In addition, it is easy to handle and can be stored at a temperature up to 25°C. In summary, Hizentra is an advance in the field of immunoglobulin replacement therapy, which might offer benefits for home therapy patients.
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