This page contains brief details about the drug , it's indication, dosage & administaration, mechanism of action, related brands with strength, warnings and common side effects.

Background and Date of Approval

Avelumab is an anticancer drug that belongs to the class of medications called PD-1/PD-L1 (programmed death ligand-1) inhibitors. FDA approved it on June 30, 2020, to treat certain types of cancers.

Mechanism of Action of undefined

Avelumab is a monoclonal antibody (a type of protein) that attaches to a specific target in the body called PD-L1. It binds to PD-L1 and blocks this protective effect, allowing the immune system to attack the tumor cells. It also induces antibody-dependent cell-mediated cytotoxicity, ultimately leading to cancer cell death.

Uses of undefined

Avelumab is an intravenously administered drug. It is used to treat Merkel cell carcinoma, a rare type of skin cancer that has spread to other body parts in adults and children 12 years and older. It is also indicated to treat urothelial carcinoma, cancer that originates in the urinary tract that has spread to nearby tissues or other body parts of the body in people whose cancer worsened during or within 12 months after it was treated with other anticancer medications. It is also used in combination with other anticancer medicines to treat renal cell carcinoma, a type of kidney cancer that has spread to other body parts.

undefined Drug administaration and Dosage available

Avelumab is a prescription medicine available as an injection. It will be given to you by a doctor or nurse in a hospital or clinic setting trained in cancer chemotherapy. It is given as an intravenous infusion drip (into your vein). This will take one hour. Do not self-administer the injection. Your doctor will decide the dose and duration of the treatment based on your disease severity, body weight, and other factors.

Warnings, Precautions and Side Effects of undefined


This medicine is intended to cause inflammation of the liver, lungs, and colon. Inform your physician if you have noticed any symptoms of liver injury, lung problems, or stomach or bowel problems. Avelumab should not be administered to pregnant women because it may cause severe birth defects. This medicine may cause cardiovascular problems in long-term use.


Do not take avelumab if you are allergic to avelumab or any other ingredients of this medicine. Inform your physician if you have liver diseases, hepatitis B, HIV/AIDS, or other immune diseases before initiating the therapy. This medicine is not recommended for children and adolescents below 18. If you suffer from any of the reactions like infusion-related reactions, inflammation of your lungs, liver, pancreas, watery stools, or diarrhea, inform your doctor immediately and seek medical attention. 

Avelumab should not be used in pregnant and breastfeeding women. Inform your physician if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Use effective contraception throughout the therapy to avoid pregnancy. Your healthcare professional may advise you to take certain blood tests to monitor the effectiveness and side effects of the therapy. Inform your healthcare provider about all your medicines, including prescription, over-the-counter, vaccinations, nutritional and vitamin supplements, and herbal products. Certain medications may interact with this injection and reduce its effectiveness by causing undesirable side effects.

Side Effects

The common side effects of Avelumab are increased blood pressure, swelling in the legs and feet, skin rash, abdominal pain, decreased appetite, diarrhea, nausea, decreased RBC counts, muscle pain, cough, shortness of breath, difficulty in talking, and tiredness. Other serious side effects are heart problems, severe skin reactions, thyroid problems, liver injury, visual impairment, infusion reactions.

Word Of Advice

Store in a refrigerator (2°C to 8°C). Do not freeze. Store in the original package to protect from light. keep the injection away from the reach of children and pets. If you have missed any dosing appointments, inform your doctor and schedule immediately. Report symptoms of infection, anemia, or bleeding immediately to your doctor. Do not breastfeed during the treatment and for 1 month after the last dose. 

Inform your doctor if you have kidney disease, liver disease, heart disease, diabetes, lung or breathing problems, or stomach problems before initiating the therapy. Do not stop taking the injection without consulting the physician. Stopping your treatment may stop the effect of the medicine. Your doctor may ask you to do certain tests to check for the effectiveness of the therapy and to monitor any unwanted side effects.

Frequently Asked Question


  1. Bavencio 20 mg/mL concentrate for solution for infusion - Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC) - (emc). Revised February 2022. Accessed May 4, 2023.
  2. BAVENCIO-Avelumab Injection.; Revised June 2020. Accessed May 4, 2023.
  3. Douglas F. Lake and Adrienne D. Briggs, Immunopharmacology, Lange’s Basic & Clinical Pharmacology, 14th Edition, 2018, 977-1002.


The drug information on this page is not a substitute for medical advice. It is meant for educational purposes only. For further details, consult your doctor about your medical condition to know if you can receive this treatment.