Generic Name: interferon gamma-1b (IN-ter-FEER-on GAM-uh)
Brand Name: Actimmune
Interferon gamma-1b is used for:
Reducing the number and severity of infections associated with chronic granulomatous disease. It is also used to delay the progression of severe, life-threatening bone density disease. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Interferon gamma-1b is a protein identical to one found in the body. How interferon gamma-1b works is not fully understood. It is thought to enhance the action of cells the body uses in defense against certain diseases.
Do NOT use interferon gamma-1b if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in interferon gamma-1b or to any medicine derived from Escherichia coli
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using interferon gamma-1b:
Some medical conditions may interact with interferon gamma-1b. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have a history of bone marrow depression, blood problems (eg, anemia), liver problems, seizures or epilepsy, or suicidal thoughts or behaviors
- if you have a history of irregular heartbeat, congestive heart failure, or other heart problems
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with interferon gamma-1b. However, no specific interactions with interferon gamma-1b are known at this time.
Ask your health care provider if interferon gamma-1b may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use interferon gamma-1b:
Use interferon gamma-1b as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- An extra patient leaflet is available with interferon gamma-1b. Talk to your pharmacist if you have questions about this information.
- Interferon gamma-1b is usually administered as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. If you are using interferon gamma-1b at home, carefully follow the injection procedures taught to you by your health care provider.
- Do not shake interferon gamma-1b.
- The medicine vial is for a single dose only. Any unused portion of interferon gamma-1b should be thrown away.
- Do not use interferon gamma-1b if it contains particles, is cloudy or discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged.
- Do not inject into an area of the body where the skin is irritated, red, bruised, infected, or scarred in any way. If you experience a break in the skin, a blue-black discoloration of the skin, or fluid drainage from the injection site, contact your heath care provider at once before continuing interferon gamma-1b.
- To decrease side effects, use interferon gamma-1b at bedtime unless directed otherwise by your doctor.
- Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Ask your health care provider how to dispose of these materials after use. Follow all local rules for disposal.
- If you miss a dose of interferon gamma-1b, use it as soon as possible. However, your next injection should be scheduled about 48 hours later. Do not use 2 doses at once. Do not use interferon gamma-1b on 2 consecutive days.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use interferon gamma-1b.
Important safety information:
- Flu-like symptoms caused by this drug can be lessened by taking interferon gamma-1b at bedtime. Use a nonprescription medicine to prevent or lessen fever and headache.
- Interferon gamma-1b may lower your body's ability to fight infection. Prevent infection by avoiding contact with people with colds or other infections. Notify your doctor of any signs of infection, including fever, sore throat, rash, or chills.
- Interferon gamma-1b may reduce the number of clot-forming cells (platelets) in your blood. Avoid activities that may cause bruising or injury. Tell your doctor if you have unusual bruising or bleeding. Tell your doctor if you have dark, tarry, or bloody stools.
- Lab tests, including blood cell counts, kidney and liver function tests, and urine tests, may be performed while you use interferon gamma-1b. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Caution is advised when using interferon gamma-1b in CHILDREN; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially elevated liver enzyme levels.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: It is not known if interferon gamma-1b can cause harm to the fetus. If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using interferon gamma-1b during while you are pregnant. It is not known if interferon gamma-1b is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking interferon gamma-1b.
Possible side effects of interferon gamma-1b:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Diarrhea; fatigue; flu-like symptoms (eg, low-grade fever, chills, general body discomfort); headache; joint pain; muscle pain; nausea; pain, redness, or swelling at the injection site; tiredness; vomiting; weakness.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest pain; confusion; dizziness; fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; high or persistent fever; mood or mental changes; seizures; signs of infection (eg, chills, persistent sore throat); stomach pain; trouble walking; unusual bruising or bleeding; yellowing of the eyes or skin.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include dizziness; mental changes; trouble walking; unusual bruising or bleeding.Proper storage of interferon gamma-1b:
Store interferon gamma-1b in the refrigerator, between 36 and 46 degrees F (2 and 8 degrees C). Do not freeze. Interferon gamma-1b should not be left at room temperature for longer than 12 hours. Any vials of interferon gamma-1b left out of the refrigerator for longer than 12 hours should not be used and should be thrown away. Keep interferon gamma-1b out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about interferon gamma-1b, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Interferon gamma-1b is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take interferon gamma-1b or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about interferon gamma-1b. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to interferon gamma-1b. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using interferon gamma-1b.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.