Copaxone (glatiramer acetate) is a brand-name prescription medication. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it to treat the following conditions in adults:
- active secondary progressive multiple sclerosis
- relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis
- clinically isolated syndrome
Copaxone comes as a solution in single-dose, prefilled syringes. It’s given by subcutaneous injection.
Copaxone is also available as a generic drug called Glatopa. Like Copaxone, Glatopa contains the active ingredient glatiramer acetate.
For information about the dosage of Copaxone, including its strengths and how to take the drug, keep reading. For a comprehensive look at Copaxone, see this article.
Note: If you aren’t comfortable using the prefilled syringes of Copaxone, talk with your doctor to see if the autoject 2 for glass syringe is an option for you.
This article describes typical dosages for Copaxone provided by the drug’s manufacturer. When taking Copaxone, always follow the dosage prescribed by your doctor.
Below is information about Copaxone dosages for its approved uses.
Copaxone dosage form
Copaxone is a solution that comes in a single-dose, prefilled syringe. It’s given by subcutaneous injection.
If you aren’t comfortable using this form of Copaxone, talk with your doctor to see if the autoject 2 for glass syringe is an option for you.
Copaxone dosage strength
Copaxone comes in two strengths: 20 milligrams (mg) per milliliter (mL) of solution and 40 mg/mL of solution.
The following information describes dosages that are commonly prescribed or recommended. However, be sure to take the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. Your doctor will determine the best dosage to fit your needs.
The injection frequency of Copaxone will depend on the dosage your doctor prescribes. Below is a table of the recommended dosing schedule of Copaxone.
|Dose of Copaxone
|once per day
|once per day, 3 days a week with at least 48 hours between each dose
If you are taking 40 mg/mL of Copaxone, you can choose the three days a week you want to take your doses. Be sure to wait at least 48 hours before you take your next dose. If you don’t want to take Copaxone on the weekend, you can choose a Monday, Wednesday, and Friday dosing schedule.
Try to take your Copaxone dose at the same time each day.
Copaxone is meant to be a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that Copaxone is safe and effective for you, you’ll likely take it long term.
See below for what to do if you miss a dose for a recommended dosage of Copaxone.
Missed 20 mg/mL dose
If you take 20 milligrams (mg) per milliliter (mL) of Copaxone every day, you can take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it’s nearly time for your next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next scheduled dose as usual. You should not take more than one dose at the same time to make up for a missed dose.
Missed 40 mg/mL dose
If you take 40 mg/mL of Copaxone, you can take the missed dose as usual the next day. You will need to take your next dose at least 48 hours later. This means you may not be able to continue your usual dosing schedule until the following week.
For example, if you take Copaxone on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, but you miss your dose on Monday, take your missed dose on Tuesday. You can take your next dose 48 hours later, on Thursday. You can take your third dose for the week on Saturday. The following week, you can return to your normal Monday, Wednesday, and Friday dosing schedule.
What you can do
If you miss a dose of Copaxone and you’re not sure what to do, ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice. They will need to know which dosage of the drug you’re taking.
To help make sure that you don’t miss a dose, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or using a timer. You could also download a reminder app on your phone.
The Copaxone dosage your doctor prescribes will depend on several factors. These include:
- the type and severity of the condition you’re taking Copaxone to treat
- the strength of Copaxone you take
- your age
Other medical conditions you have can also affect your Copaxone dosage.
Copaxone is given by subcutaneous injection. Before you start treatment, your doctor or another healthcare professional will teach you how to inject Copaxone.
Copaxone comes as a solution in a single-dose, prefilled syringe with a needle attached. If you aren’t comfortable using this form, talk with your doctor to see if the autoject 2 for glass syringe is an option for you.
You’ll inject Copaxone into one of the following areas:
- your abdomen (avoid injecting into the area 2 inches (in) around your bellybutton)
- the front of your thighs (inject into the area about 2 in below your groin and 2 in above your knee)
- the back of your hips below your waist
- the back of your upper arms
Talk with your doctor or healthcare professional about the best injection site for you. Be sure to vary which site you use with each dose.
It may be helpful to keep a record of when you take a dose of Copaxone and what injection site you use.
Tips for taking Copaxone
When taking Copaxone, consider the following tips:
- Take Copaxone out of the refrigerator about 20 minutes before you inject your dose. The drug may be more comfortable to inject when it’s room temperature.
- Be sure that the solution in the syringe is clear, colorless to slightly yellow. If you see any discoloration or particles, do not use the syringe.
- Try not to rub or massage your injection site for at least 24 hours after you’ve injected Copaxone.
- Be sure to not inject Copaxone into a vein or muscle. Injections are meant to be given only under your skin.
- Vary your injection site with each dose. And avoid areas of skin that are red, scarred, lumpy, or swollen.
- Avoid injecting Copaxone in areas of skin that have stretch marks, birthmarks, or tattoos.
- Use each syringe only once.
It’s important that you don’t inject more Copaxone than your doctor prescribes. For some medications, taking more than the recommended amount may lead to side effects or overdose.
If you take more than the recommended amount of Copaxone
Call your doctor right away if you believe you’ve taken too much Copaxone. Another option is to call the American Association of Poison Control Centers at 800-222-1222 or use its online tool. If you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number, or go to the nearest emergency room.
The dosages in this article are typical dosages provided by the drug manufacturer. If your doctor recommends Copaxone for you, they will prescribe the dosage that’s right for you. Always follow the dosage that your doctor prescribes for you.
As with any drug, never change your dosage of Copaxone without your doctor’s recommendation. If you have questions about the dosage of Copaxone that’s right for you, talk with your doctor.
Besides learning about dosage, you may want other information about Copaxone. These additional articles might be helpful to you:
- More about Copaxone. For information about other aspects of Copaxone, refer to this article.
- Side effects. To learn about side effects of Copaxone, see this article. You can also look at the Copaxone prescribing information.
- Drug comparison. To learn how Copaxone compares with other drugs, read the comparisons with Avonex, Glatopa, and Tecfidera.
- Details about multiple sclerosis. For details about multiple sclerosis (MS), see our MS hub and list of MS articles.
Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.