"By Kathleen Doheny
WebMD Health News
Reviewed by Michael W. Smith, MD
Dec. 30, 2013 -- The FDA has rejected the new multiple sclerosis drug Lemtrada, saying the drugmaker didn't show the drug's benefits outweigh some s"...
Rebif Consumer (continued)
Flu-like symptoms such as headache, nausea, fever, chills, tiredness, and muscle aches/pain may occur, especially when you first start this medication. You can reduce these side effects by injecting this medicine at bedtime and using fever reducers/pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. 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., depression, rare thoughts of suicide), vision changes, gradual change in weight, intolerance to cold or heat, increased urination, signs of infection (e.g., fever, persistent sore throat, cough), easy bruising/bleeding, fast/irregular heartbeat, sudden increase in weight, swelling hands/legs/feet, severe stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine.
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 Rebif (interferon beta-1a) 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.
Some brands of this medication contain albumin made from human blood. Even though the blood is carefully tested, and this medication goes through a special manufacturing process, there is an extremely small chance that you may get infections from the medication (for example viruses such as hepatitis). Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: blood problems (e.g., anemia, low platelets, low white blood cells), heart disease (e.g., heart failure, irregular heartbeat), liver disease, mental/mood disorders (e.g., depression, psychosis, suicidal thoughts), seizures, thyroid disease, history of alcohol dependence.
Limit alcoholic beverages while using this medication. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about how to drink alcohol safely while using this drug.
This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm the unborn baby. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. 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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