Also known as Enbrel, etanercept targets a part of the immune system involved in psoriasis. It is given as a shot. It can be a very effective treatment for psoriasis.

Side effects of etanercept

  • Reactions where the shot is given
  • Headache
  • Rash
  • Nausea (feeling like you need to vomit)
  • Upper respiratory infections (colds)
  • Worsening of heart failure

Rare but serious side effects of etanercept

  • Higher risk of getting infections, such as tuberculosis and hepatitis B and C.
    • You should be checked for these infections before starting this medicine.
    • Stop the medicine and call your doctor if you have signs of infection.
  • Higher risk of certain cancers and a serious brain condition.
    • Tell your doctor if you have a personal or family history of multiple sclerosis.
  • Serious allergic reaction.

Vaccines and etanercept

Get a flu shot each year, unless you have been told not to by your doctor. Talk with your doctor before getting live vaccines.

Some live vaccines

  • Measles-mumps-rubella (MMR)
  • Nasal flu mist
  • Varicella
  • Zostavax (shingles)
  • Yellow fever
  • Typhoid
  • Live poliovirus

Pregnancy and etanercept

Talk to your doctor before trying to get pregnant. Right now there is no known risk of harm to the baby when this medicine is taken during pregnancy.

Last reviewed: 
August 2018

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