Neoral is an altered form of cyclosporine that is prescribed to treat severe psoriasis and severe, active rheumatoid arthritis. It is also licensed to prevent organ rejection in people who have had a liver, kidney, or heart transplant. It comes in the form of a capsule or liquid, and is taken by mouth twice daily. Side effects may include high blood pressure, tremors, and kidney problems.
What Is Neoral?
Neoral® (cyclosporine) is a prescription medication approved to treat severe psoriasis and severe, active rheumatoid arthritis in people who do not adequately respond to other treatments. It is also approved to prevent organ rejection after a kidney, liver, or heart transplant.
Neoral contains a modified form of cyclosporine, an immunosuppressant that is also found in Sandimmune®. This modified form of cyclosporine has been slightly altered so that it is more easily absorbed by the body. Because modified cyclosporine is absorbed differently than original cyclosporine, the medications cannot be directly substituted for each other.
Neoral is made by Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation.
How Does Neoral Work?
Neoral is an immunosuppressant medication, which means it suppresses the immune system (makes it less active). An overactive immune system is involved in rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis. Transplant rejection occurs when the body's immune system recognizes the transplanted organ as a foreign material and attacks it. By suppressing the immune system, Neoral can help prevent transplant rejection and ease symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Neoral [package insert]. East Hanover, NJ: Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation;2009 October.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed August 22, 2011.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 8th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2008.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed August 22, 2011.
National Library of Medicine (US). Hazardous Substances Data Bank (HSDB). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?HSDB. Accessed August 1, 2011.
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