"Oct. 31, 2012 -- Two new trials offer proof that a leukemia drug long used to treat multiple sclerosis works better than a common treatment.
When compared with the widely used drug interferon beta, the leukemia drug alemtuzumab reduce"...
Betaseron Consumer (continued)
Most patients have flu-like symptoms such as headache, tiredness, fever, chills, and muscle aches when they first start this medication. These symptoms usually last about 1 day after the injection and improve or go away after a few months of continued use. You can reduce these side effects by injecting this medicine at bedtime and using fever reducers/pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen before each dose. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: mental/mood changes (e.g., new or worsening depression, thoughts of suicide, psychosis), feeling too hot or cold (more than others around you), unusual tiredness, gradual change in weight (without a change in diet or exercise), easy bleeding/bruising, persistent nausea/vomiting, pus or change in skin color at the injection site, stomach/abdominal pain, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, swelling ankles/feet.
This medication may lower your ability to fight infections. This may make you more likely to get a serious infection or make any infection you have worse. Tell your doctor right away if you have any signs of infection (such as fever, chills, persistent sore throat, cough).
Get medical help right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: chest pain, seizures.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
In the US -
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Read the Betaseron (interferon beta-1b) Side Effects Center for a complete guide to possible side effects
PRECAUTIONS: Before using interferon, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to products containing human albumin; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: blood cell disorders (e.g., anemia, neutropenia, thrombocytopenia), heart disease (e.g., angina, irregular heartbeat, congestive heart failure), liver disease, mental/mood disorders (e.g., depression, psychosis, suicidal thoughts), seizure disorder, thyroid disease, use/abuse of alcohol.
Interferon can make you more likely to get infections or may worsen any current infections. Therefore, wash your hands well to prevent the spread of infection. Avoid contact with people who have infections that may spread to others (such as chickenpox, measles, flu). Consult your doctor if you have been exposed to an infection or for more details.
Do not have immunizations/vaccinations without the consent of your doctor. Avoid contact with people who have recently received live vaccines (such as flu vaccine inhaled through the nose).
This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Consult your doctor for more details.
It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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