|Treatments > Medications Used In MS|
Approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
Betaseron is supplied with a pre-filled diluant syringe to which the medication needs to be added prior to injection; no refrigeration is necessary.
Do not reuse needles or syringes. Dispose of the syringes as directed by your physician and keep them out of the reach of children.
Since flu-like symptoms are a common side effect associated with at least the initial weeks of taking Betaseron, it is recommended that the medication be taken at bedtime. Taking acetaminophen (TylenolŪ) or ibuprofen (AdvilŪ) thirty minutes before each injection will also help to relieve the flu-like symptoms.
Because injection site reactions (swelling, redness, discoloration, or pain) are relatively common, it is recommended that the sites be rotated according to a schedule provided for you by your physician. Injection site necrosis [skin damage], which occurs in about 5% of patients during the first four months of therapy, has been reported in post-marketing studies even after a year of treatment. In other to avoid infection and other complications, you should report promptly any break in the skin, which may be associated with blue-black discoloration, swelling, or drainage of fluid from the injection site. Your physician will determine whether to continue treatment while the skin lesions are being treated.
Because of the potential of Betaseron to affect the functioning of the liver and thyroid gland, and to alter the levels of white blood cells, red blood cells, and platelets in a person's system, blood tests are recommended at regular intervals.
During the clinical trial of interferon beta-1b, there were four suicide attempts and one completed suicide among those taking interferon beta-1b. Although there is no evidence that the suicide attempts were related to the medication itself, it is recommended that individuals with a history of severe depressive disorder be closely monitored while taking Betaseron.
Possible Side Effects
Depression, including suicide attempts, has been reported by patients taking Betaseron. Common symptoms of depression are sadness, anxiety, loss of interest in daily activities, irritability, low self-esteem, guilt, poor concentration, indecisiveness, confusion, and eating and sleep disturbances. If you experience any of these symptoms for longer than a day or two, contact your physician promptly.
|Last updated August 3, 2007|