Nivolumab (Opdivo)

This is an immune checkpoint inhibitor that targets PD-1, a protein on immune system cells (called T cells) that normally help keep these cells from attacking other cells in the body. By blocking PD-1, this drug boosts the immune response against melanoma cells. This can often shrink tumours and help people live longer. These drugs are given as an intravenous (IV) infusion every 2 weeks. Often, nivolumab is prescribed in combination with ipilimumab, which has resulted in longer progression-free survival and a higher objective response rate than ipilimumab alone.

Side Effects

Common side effects can include fatigue, cough, nausea, itching, skin rash, decreased appetite, constipation, joint pain, and diarrhea.
Always talk to your doctor, pharmacist or nurse about your side effects so they can help you manage them.
Watch Now – Video on the side effects of Immunotherapies

Provincial Funding Summary

Nivolumab (Opdivo) for Metastatic Melanoma (pCODR 10063)  View the full report PDF from CADTH
This information is current as of October 5, 2018.
Note: Funding criteria as listed on the decision date. Please refer to the provincial drug programs for the most recent funding criteria and program eligibility

Please note: This information is not meant to act as a treatment decision aid, but rather to provide general information about which metastatic melanoma or skin cancer treatments are covered by provincial health care plans in Canada. It is current to the date indicated and may not be currently accurate due to the changing landscape of coverage in Canada. If you have private insurance coverage, you may have access to therapies not covered by the provincial plans in your province.  All information obtained about specific treatments should be further discussed with your physician.

Melanoma What You Need To Know

A leading national melanoma resource written with the help of specialists in oncology and health care.

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Melanoma Support

The Melanoma Network of Canada has a number of free services for patients, caregivers and healthcare professionals.

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