|Drug Name||Avonex (interferon beta-1a)|
|Active Ingredient||interferon beta-1a|
What is Avonex?
Avonex (interferon beta-1a) is made from human proteins. Interferons help the body fight viral infections. Avonex is used to treat relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS). This medication will not cure MS, it will only decrease the frequency of relapse symptoms. Avonex may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Before using Avonex
You should not use Avonex if you are allergic to interferons or human albumin.
Some patients using interferon medications have become very depressed or had thoughts of suicide. Stop using Avonex if you have symptoms of depression (sadness, crying, loss of interest in things you once liked) or if you have any thoughts of hurting yourself.
To make sure Avonex is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
· liver disease;
· epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
· heart disease, chest pain (angina);
· a bleeding disorder or history of blood clots;
· a thyroid disorder; or
· a history of depression or suicidal behavior.
Avonex may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.
It is not known whether interferon beta-1a passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Some brands of interferon beta-1a contain albumin. Albumin comes from human plasma (part of the blood) which may contain viruses and other infectious agents. Donated plasma is tested and treated to reduce the risk of it containing infectious agents, but there is still a small possibility it could transmit disease. Talk with your doctor about the risks and benefits of using this medication.
Avonex side effects
Call your doctor at once if you have:
· fever, chills, body aches, chest pain, flu symptoms;
· pale skin, easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin;
· severe pain, swelling, bruising, redness, oozing, or skin changes where the injection was given;
· changes in your vision;
· seizure (convulsions);
· feeling hot or cold, unexplained weight changes;
· Kidney problems - blood in your urine, swelling or rapid weight gain, little or no urination;
· signs of a serious blood cell disorder - confusion, feeling tired or irritable, stomach pain, bloody diarrhea, vomiting;
· liver problems - nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, tired feeling, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
· severe skin reaction - fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling.
|Minimum Order Quantity||1 Unit|
|Packaging Size||1 Syringe per box|
|Usage||Hospital, Personal, Clinical|
WHAT INFLUVAC IS AND WHAT IT IS USED FOR?
Influvac is a vaccine. This vaccine helps to protect you or your child against influenza (flu), particularly in people who run a high risk of associated complications. The use of Influvac should be based on official recommendations.
When a person is given the vaccine Influvac, the immune system (the body's natural defense system) will produce its own protection (antibodies) against the disease. None of the ingredients in the vaccine can cause flu.
Flu is a disease that can spread rapidly and is caused by different types of strains that can change every year. Therefore, this is why you or your child might need to be vaccinated every year. The greatest risk of catching flu is during the cold months between October and March. If you or your child were not vaccinated in the autumn, it is still sensible to be vaccinated up until the spring since you or your child runs the risk of catching flu until then. Your doctor will be able to recommend the best time to be vaccinated.
Influvac will protect you or your child against the three strains of virus contained in the vaccine from about 2 to 3 weeks after the injection.
The incubation period for flu is a few days, so if you or your child is exposed to flu immediately before or after your vaccination, you or your child could still develop the illness.
The vaccine will not protect you or your child against the common cold, even though some of the symptoms are similar to flu.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU OR YOUR CHILD USE INFLUVAC
To make sure that Influvac is suitable for you or your child, it is important to tell your doctor or pharmacist if any of the points below apply to you or your child. If there is anything you do not understand, ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain.
Do not use Influvac
· the active substances, or
· any of the other ingredients of Influvac (see section 6), or
· any component that may be present in very small amounts such as eggs (ovalbumin or chicken proteins), formaldehyde, cetyltrimethylammonium bromide, polysorbate 80 or gentamicin (an antibiotic that is used to treat bacterial infections)
Warnings and precautions
You should tell your doctor before vaccination if you or your child have a poor immune response (immunodeficiency or taking medicines affecting the immune system).
Fainting, feeling faint or other stress related reactions can occur following, or even before, any needle injection. Therefore tell your doctor or nurse if you have experienced this kind of reaction with a previous injection.
Your doctor will decide if you or your child should receive the vaccine.
If, for any reason, you or your child has a blood test within a few days following a flu vaccination, please tell your doctor. This is because false positive blood test results have been observed in a few patients who had recently been vaccinated.
As with all vaccines, Influvac may not fully protect all persons who are vaccinated.