Can abatacept affect other medicines and treatments?
You'll probably be taking methotrexate alongside abatacept.
Check with your doctor before starting any new medications, and remember to mention you're on abatacept if you're treated by anyone other than your usual rheumatology team.
It's recommended that you carry a biological therapy alert card, so anyone treating you will know you're on abatacept – ask your rheumatology team for a card.
Can I have vaccinations while I'm on abatacept?
It's usually recommended that people on abatacept avoid live vaccines such as yellow fever. However, sometimes a live vaccine may be necessary (for example, rubella vaccination for women of childbearing age).
If you're offered shingles vaccination (Zostavax) it's best if you can have this before starting abatacept. Shingles vaccination isn't recommended for people who are already on abatacept.
Pneumococcal vaccine (which protects against the commonest cause of pneumonia) and yearly flu vaccines are safe and recommended.
Can I continue with abatacept if I'm going to have an operation?
Talk this over with your specialists. It's likely you'll be advised to stop abatacept for a time before and after surgery.