Monoclonal Antibody Infusion Therapy for COVID-19
Monoclonal antibody infusion therapy is available at University Medical Center to treat people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and have a high risk of becoming very ill.
The outpatient treatment consists of IV therapy with laboratory-made proteins that work with the body’s immune system to prevent the infection from progressing to severe COVID-19.
Who can receive monoclonal antibody therapy?
Monoclonal antibody therapy has been authorized to treat COVID-19 in adults and pediatric patients 12 years of age and older (weighing at least 88 pounds) who are COVID-19 positive and high risk for progression to severe COVID-19 that could lead to hospitalization or death.
Under the FDA’s emergency use authorization, eligible patients must have at least one of these qualifying conditions:
- Older age (for example older than 65 years old)
- Obesity or being overweight (for example, a body mass index or BMI over 25 in adults)
- Chronic kidney disease
- Immunosuppressive disease or immunosuppressive treatment
- Heart disease or chronic lung diseases
- Sickle cell disease
- Neurodevelopmental disorders or other medically complex conditions such as metabolic syndromes
- Having a medical-related technology dependence such as a feeding tube
- Other factors that may place individuals at high risk for COVID-19 complications
How is monoclonal antibody therapy administered?
For monoclonal antibody therapy to be successful it needs to be started as soon as possible after a positive COVID-19 test and within 10 days of showing signs of symptoms. Treatment is administered through infusion also know as IV therapy. A needle is injected into a patient’s arm which allows the medication to be delivered directly into the bloodstream.
Can I still get vaccinated if I’m receiving therapy?
Yes, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention states that any form of antiviral therapy is unlikely to impair development of a protective antibody response. It is recommended that you wait 90 days before receiving the vaccine and 90 days before your second dose if you have received your first dose before receiving monoclonal antibody therapy. Talk with your healthcare provider about when you can receive a COVID-19 vaccine following your therapy.
If you have tested COVID-19 positive, have had symptoms for fewer than 10 days and are interested in monoclonal antibody infusion, call 504.962.6165. Our clinic team will review the criteria with you to determine if you are eligible for this treatment.