Stelara SQ Injection Therapy

See why thousands of patients choose our centers as their preferred destination for ongoing care, including Stelara SQ Injection treatments.
Important Announcement

IVX Health was recently notified by the pharmaceutical manufacturer Janssen that six Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) – Palmetto, Noridian, NGS, WPS, Novitas, and First Coast Service Options - are adding the subcutaneous (injectable) formulation of its biologic therapy STELARA to their Self-Administered Drug (SAD) Exclusion List. Effective dates for the policy changes are as follows:

  • October 15, 2021: Palmetto, Noridian, and NGS
  • November 15, 2021: WPS
  • June 6, 2022: Novitas and First Coast Service Options

Medicare will no longer cover STELARA SQ injections under the medical benefit (Part B) and instead will cover STELARA SQ under the prescription benefit (Part D). This change limits the ability of providers, including IVX, to administer STELARA for Medicare patients and generally requires patients remaining on STELARA SQ to self-administer the injection at home.

Due to this classification change, IVX Health is no longer accepting new STELARA SQ patients with Medicare in the following states:

  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kansas / Missouri
  • Pennsylvania
  • Tennessee
  • Railroad Medicare patients in all states

NOTE: IVX Health will continue to accept STELARA IV patients with Medicare.

This change has immediate ramifications to patient care at IVX Health. IVX Health is proactively notifying referring providers about the classification change and the appropriate next steps for their patients. If you are an existing STELARA SQ patient at IVX Health and live in one of the aforementioned states, please contact your local IVX Health center immediately to discuss next steps.

Stelara SQ is a biologic therapy that is indicated to treat:

  • moderately to severely active Crohn’s disease (CD) where treatment with immunomodulators, corticosteroids, or one or more TNF blockers failed
  • active psoriatic arthritis
  • moderate to severe plaque psoriasis with a candidacy for phototherapy or systemic therapy

What Is Stelara SQ? 

Stelara SQ (ustekinumab) is a prescription medication administered for patients in all IVX Health centers via subcutaneous injection. 

How Stelara SQ Works 

People with certain conditions have elevated levels of the proteins IL-12 and IL-23 that cause inflammation in the body. Stelara works by targeting and blocking the action of IL-12 and IL-23. 

What Is Stelara SQ Used For?  

Doctors order ustekinumab to treat several medical conditions. 

Stelara SQ treats: 

Stelara SQ Injection Dosage and Administration 

Patients receive ustekinumab via subcutaneous injection. 

Dosage and Frequency  

Stelara dosage depends on the patient’s condition. 

For Crohn’s patients, Stelara is administered via a single infusion, typically at least one hour, and followed by an injection once every eight weeks until patients have received six total injections. For patients with psoriatic arthritis or plaque psoriasis, Stelara is administered subcutaneously at week one and week 4, followed by doses received every 12 weeks. 

Stelara SQ Injection Side Effects  

As with all medications, side effects are possible.  

Common side effects include: 

  • nasal congestion, sore throat, runny nose 
  • upper respiratory infections 
  • fever 
  • headache 
  • tiredness 
  • itching 
  • nausea and vomiting 
  • redness at the injection site 
  • vaginal yeast infections 
  • urinary tract infections 
  • sinus infections 
  • bronchitis 
  • diarrhea 
  • stomach pain 
  • joint pain 

Serious side effects include: 

  • cancer 
  • serious allergic reactions 
  • posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome (PRES) 
  • lung inflammation

How To Prepare for a Stelara SQ Injection  

It is essential that patients inform their physician if they: 

  • have any serious infections, cancer, or PRES 
  • have an allergy to Stelara or any of its ingredients 
  • are allergic to latex 
  • have any new or changing lesions within psoriasis areas or on normal skin 
  • are receiving or have received allergy shots 
  • are receiving or have received phototherapy for psoriasis 
  • have any serious or recurrent infections 
  • are taking any medications 

Before treatment, patients should get a good night’s sleep. In addition, they need to drink an adequate amount of fluid and eat a meal before their Stelara treatment at IVX Health. 

During treatment with Stelara, patients need to avoid receiving live vaccines. 

How to Get a Referral for Stelara SQ Injections 

Every Stelara referral must be accompanied by a physician’s order for treatment. 

  • Patient information should include: 
  • Name 
  • Current address 
  • Home and mobile phone number 
  • Insurance information 

Information the physician must include on the patient’s order for Stelara: 

  • Patient’s name and DOB 
  • Order date 
  • Diagnosis 
  • Physician’s name and NPI# 
  • Office address, phone, and fax numbers 
  • Provider’s signature 

Supporting clinical documentation from the physician should include: 

  • Results of a recent tuberculosis (TB) skin/lab testing 
  • Patient’s current weight and height 
  • For Crohn’s patients, include date of induction dose given 
  • Clinicals to support one or more of the following: 
    • Patient has moderately to severely active Crohn’s disease (CD) and evidence to support one or more of the following: 
      • Failed or was intolerant to treatment with immunomodulators or corticosteroids but never failed treatment with a tumor necrosis factor blocker OR 
      • Failed or was intolerant to treatment with one or more TNF blockers 

Patients chose IVX Health to receive their ongoing Stelara SQ treatments because:

  • ALL private suites
  • Comfortable recliners, with chairs for guests
  • Evening & weekend appointments
  • Friendly clinical staff deliver personal service
  • Big screen TVs, high-speed WiFi, free snacks

Interested in moving your care to IVX Health?

Stelara SQ Financial Assistance Programs

Information about financial assistance programs coming soon.

Stelara SQ Related Blog Posts

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The infusion experience is a tough one. So to create this serene, peaceful environment means more than you will ever know.

Jennifer, Patient at IVX Health


IVX Health would love to learn more about your care needs. If you’re interested in switching your infusion services – or if you just want to learn more – let us know.

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