Humira (Adalimumab) Side Effects, Important Information & What to Avoid

Adalimumab belongs to a group of medications which are called the TNF blockers. It blocks the Tumor Necrosis Factor present in the immune system of the human body. TNF causes the joints to swell, and in the case of psoriasis, it causes red, scaly patches. It reduces the swelling in the joints, thus reducing future damage to the joint.


Adalimumab is used in the treatment and reduction of pain and swelling due to the following types of arthritis:

  • Rheumatoid
  • Psoriatic
  • Juvenile idiopathic
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • It is also used in the treatment of the following skin disorders:
  • Plaque-type psoriasis
  • Hidradenitis suppurativa
  • Adalimumab is also used in the treatment of the following diseases:
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Uveitis


Side Effects

If you are using Adalimumab with consultation from your doctor, then you should keep the fact in mind that he has weighed the pros and cons of the medicine before prescribing them to you.


Minor Side Effects

There are some side effects of using Adalimumab. Depending on their severity, they may not even need medical attention. Since it is foreign for the body, it will take some time to adjust to Adalimumab, and these side effects will go after some time naturally. Side effects include:

  • Redness
  • Itching
  • Pain
  • Swelling at the injection site

If these side effects don’t go away for a long time, contact your physician.

Serious Side effects

Inform your healthcare provider if any of these serious side effects occur:

  • Erratic heartbeat
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling ankles
  • Unusual tiredness
  • Sudden weight gain
  • Blood in the stools
  • Mood changes
  • Severe headache
  • Easy bleeding
  • Leg pain
  • Tingling of the arms
  • Unsteadiness
  • Muscle weakness
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Vision changes
  • Joint pain
  • A butterfly-shaped rash on the cheeks


If you come in contact with the hepatitis B virus, Adalimumab may cause serious liver problems. Make sure your doctor knows your complete medical history.

It is rare to develop an allergic reaction to Adalimumab. It is also rare to get a severe allergic reaction such as difficulty in breathing or swelling of the tongue, throat or face due to this drug.

If you notice anything other than the side effects listed above, you should contact your physician and discuss it with them as soon as possible.

How to use

If you have any specific queries with regards to Adalimumab, ask your doctor. If you are going to self-administer this medication, learn all the instructions from your doctor carefully.

If you have kept this medication in a refrigerator, keep it at room temperature for about 15 minutes before using it. Do not place it in warm water to heat it.



This medication is to be injected under the skin on the thigh according to the instructions given by the doctor, usually once a week or every alternate week. Clean the injection site carefully. The dosage is specified by your doctor and depends on the condition that is being treated and your response to the treatment.

The amount of medication and the time period for which it is to be taken depends on your medical condition and other factors and is determined by your physician.

If your health deteriorates, inform your healthcare provider.



If you are allergic to it or if you have any other kind of allergies, it is better to inform your healthcare provider, before taking Adalimumab. There can be some inactive ingredients in Adalimumab which may also cause allergic reactions. To know more details, you should talk to your doctor.



Your physician should know your complete medical history as this is very crucial. If you have suffered from the following in the past or are under treatment for the following, your doctor should know beforehand:

  • Hepatitis B
  • TB infection
  • Histoplasmosis
  • Bone marrow problems
  • Seizures
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Guillain-Barre syndrome
  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Lupus

Adults who are of older age may be more sensitive to the side effects of the medication.