Anthrax Immune Globulin (Intravenous)

Anthrax immune globulin is an immunizing agent used for treating or preventing diseases which may occur when a patient's immune system is weak.


Belonging to the category of drugs called immunizing agents, anthrax immune globulin is used in patients with a weakened immune system, to treat or prevent diseases that may occur in such a condition. Anthrax immune globulin is packed with antibodies that strengthen your immune system. When combined with other medicines, it is used for treating inhalational anthrax in adults, as well as children.

Anthrax, which is spread by eating or touching something that has been infected with the anthrax germ (e.g., animals), or by inhaling the anthrax germ, is a serious illness that can cause death. This medication should only be given under your doctor's supervision.

Conditions treated

  • Inhalational anthrax

Type of medicine

  • Immunizing agent

Side effects

In addition to its desired effects, a drug may also bring about certain unwanted effects. Not all of these effects are likely to occur, however, but if they do occur, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Incidence not known:

  • Blurred vision
  • Coma
  • Agitation
  • Back, stomach, or leg pains
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Bleeding gums
  • Depression
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Dark urine
  • Confusion
  • Decreased urination
  • Fast or irregular heartbeat/pulse
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Dizziness
  • Faintness, lightheadedness or dizziness when getting up suddenly from a sitting or lying position
  • Hostility
  • Headache
  • Flushing/redness of the skin
  • Hoarseness
  • General body swelling
  • Itching
  • Skin rash
  • Lethargy
  • Hives or welts,
  • Swelling (Irritability large, and hive-like) of the face, lips, eyelids, throat, tongue, hands, feet, legs, or sex organs
  • Muscle twitching
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Swollen face, hands, or ankles
  • Nosebleeds
  • Pale skin
  • Noisy breathing
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Sudden onset of slurred speech
  • Chest, groin, or leg pain, especially calves of the legs
  • Redness of the skin
  • Seizures
  • Sudden loss of coordination
  • Stupor
  • Unusually warm skin
  • Slow or irregular breathing
  • Stiff back or neck
  • Shortness of breath, with sudden onset
  • Sudden vision changes
  • Unusual weakness or tiredness
  • Sweating
  • Yellowing of skin or eyes

At times, side effects that do not usually require any medical attention may occur. These side effects will likely vanish in the course of your treatment, as the system adjusts itself to the medication. Your pharmacist or doctor may offer tips on how to prevent or lessen some of these side effects. If any of these side effects persist or become bothersome, or if you need more information about them, be sure to check with your doctor:

More common:

  • Pain or swelling at site of injection

A patient could also experience other side effects not mentioned above. Be sure to consult your physician as soon as you can if you experience any other side effects.


Anthrax immune globin is given by a nurse or other professional in a hospital. Anthrax immune globin is administered through a needle injected into one of your veins.

Drug Interactions

Though some medications should not be used together, they may sometimes be prescribed together even if an interaction is likely to occur. Drug interactions may affect the effectiveness of your medicine, or increase the risk for severe side effects. Keep in mind that this medication guide does not cover all possible drug interactions.

Make sure you keep a list of all the products you're using, including prescription and nonprescription drugs, dietary supplements, and herbal products. You will be sharing this list with your pharmacist or doctor at every appointment.

Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol:

It is not advisable to take certain medications around mealtimes, or when you are eating certain foods, as interactions may occur. Additionally, the use of tobacco or alcohol with certain medications may also cause interactions. Have a discussion with your doctor about using your medicine with tobacco, alcohol or certain foods.

Medical problems:

Other medical conditions the patient may have could affect the use of this medicine. Be sure to inform your doctor if you suffer from or have a history of any other medical conditions, especially:

  • Diabetes
  • Recent stroke or heart attack
  • Blood clotting problems
  • Heart/blood vessel disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Allergy to immunoglobulin A (IgA)
  • IgA (immunoglobulin A) deficiency with antibodies against IgA - Should not be given to patients with these conditions.
  • Known or suspected hyperviscosity (thick blood)
  • Sepsis (severe infection in the body) - must use with caution; may make side effects worse.
  • Paraproteinemia (having paraproteins in the blood)


Before using any medication, it's important that you weigh the potential risks of using it against the benefits it can offer. Your doctor should help you with making this decision. Below are some of the top factors to consider:


Let your doctor know if you have had any odd or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. In addition, inform your health care professional if you have some other type of allergy, such as to animals, dyes, foods, preservatives. When buying non-prescription products, make sure you read the package or label ingredients carefully.


There are no conclusive studies yet that show the relationship between age and Anthrax immune globin's effects among children 16 years of age and younger. The safety and effectiveness of this medication have not been established.

Older adults

To date, no appropriate studies have found geriatric-specific problems that would impact on the efficacy of Anthrax immune globulin in elderly patients. The elderly are, however, more likely to have kidney problems, and this calls for extra caution or adjustments in dosages for this medicine.

It is essential to have your doctor monitor your progress on a regular basis so they can check for any problems that this medication may cause. The doctor may order blood and urine tests to check for any unwanted effects. Be sure to honor all your appointments with your doctor and the lab.

This medication could cause a severe allergic reaction, such as anaphylaxis, which will require emergency medical attention as it can be life-threatening. Immediately notify your doctor if you notice any of these symptoms: rash, chest pain, itching, hives, dizziness or lightheadedness, difficulty with breathing, difficulty with swallowing, swollen face, mouth or hands after taking the medication. Certain patients should not use this medication, particularly those with immunoglobulin A (IgA) deficiency and antibodies against IgA.

This medication contains maltose, which means it may affect your blood sugar levels. Consult your doctor if you observe any change in the results of your urine and blood sugar tests.

This medicine has been reported to cause blood clots. The likelihood of blood clots occurring is higher among patients with a history of blood clotting problems, or heart disease. It is also higher in those who are obese, those taking drugs containing estrogen, and those who are forced to stay in bed for a lengthy spell due to illness or surgery. Get medical attention immediately if you suddenly experience chest pain, breathing difficulties, leg pain, a severe headache, or are have problems with speech, vision or walking.

Inform your health care professional immediately if you start having lower back or side pain, dark brown or red urine, swollen arms, face or legs, sudden weight gain, a decrease in urine output, or any other urination problems after receiving this medicine. These are the symptoms of serious kidney problems.

After receiving this medication, some patients may get chills, a fever, headaches, flushing, nausea and vomiting. Tell your nurse or doctor immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.

This medication could cause hemolytic anemia or hemolysis (bleeding). Tell your nurse or doctor if you start experiencing back pain or abdominal pain, decreased urination, dark urine, trouble breathing, faster heart rate, yellowing of the skin or eyes, or a feeling of lethargy after receiving the medication.

Immediately notify your doctor if you start having a stiff neck, severe headache, fever, nausea or vomiting, eye sensitivity or painful eye movements. These are possible symptoms of a severe condition known as aseptic meningitis syndrome (AMS).

Tell your healthcare professional right away if you start experiencing the following symptoms: fast, difficult or noisy breathing, chest pain, blue fingernails and lips, shortness of breath, pale skin, fever, a cough that may produce a pink frothy sputum, swollen legs and ankles after you receive this medication. These could symptoms of serious lung problems.

Be sure to inform any other medical professional (doctor, surgeon, dentist) who is treating you that you are using this medication. This medication is known to interfere with the results of some medical tests.

You should know that this medication is made out of donated human blood. Though the risk is quite low, some products made from human blood have passed on certain viruses to the receiving patient. Both donors and the blood they donate are tested for viruses in order to minimize the risk of transmission. Have a talk with your healthcare professional about this if you have any concerns.

Both adults and children under treatment with anthrax immune globulin injection should not have any vaccines (immunization) without their doctor's approval. After receiving immune globulin injection, patients should not receive live virus vaccinations for within 3 months.


Anthrax immune globulin is administered intravenously to patients to treat inhalational anthrax, which is a serious and life-threatening condition. Anthrax is spread by inhaling the anthrax germ or by eating or touching something that has been infected with the anthrax germ, such as animals. The medication is prescribed to both adult and pediatric patients.

Anthrax immune globulin is an immunizing agent which works to treat or prevent any diseases that may occur in a patient as a result of having a weak immune system. This medication will strengthen your immune system as it is full of antibodies that protect you from many illnesses. This medication is administered by a nurse or other trained healthcare professional and should be given only under your doctor's supervision.

Receiving this medicine carries the risk of a variety of serious side effects, including blood clots, hemolytic anemia, aseptic meningitis syndrome (AMS), kidney problems, lung problems, and severe allergic reactions. Watch out for the symptoms associated with each of this conditions and call your doctor immediately you notice any of those symptoms. In particular, watch out for chest pain, breathing difficulties, urination problems and swelling in the hands, face or feet after receiving the medication. Some of these conditions could be life-threatening, and will, therefore, require immediate medical attention.

Be sure to keep all your appointments with the lab and your doctor, so that your doctor can keep track of your progress while also checking for side effects. It is also important that you keep a list of all drugs you are currently using, including prescription and nonprescription drugs, as well as any supplements or herbal products you already use or plan to start using. Always show this list to your healthcare professional at every visit. If you are undergoing surgery (dental surgery included) or treatment for some other condition, let the dentist or doctor know you are using anthrax immune globulin.

Last Reviewed:
December 25, 2017
Last Updated:
April 26, 2018
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