Interferon Alfa-2A

Description

Interferon Alfa-2A is used for the treatment of chronic hepatitis C, cancer of lymph nodes, and some types of blood cancer. It is a protein that naturally produces in the body which helps to fight viral infections and regulates the immune system.

Side effects

Major & minor side effects for Interferon Alfa-2A

  • Depression
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Visual disturbances
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Dry mouth
  • Skin Rash
  • Hair loss
  • Hypotension
  • Weight loss

Uses of Interferon Alfa-2A

What is it prescribed for?

  • Chronic Hepatitis C
  • Hairy Cell Leukemia
  • Chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML)
  • Kaposi's Sarcoma
  • Chronic Hepatitis B
  • Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma
  • Advanced Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC)
Read More
Concerns

Commonly asked questions

  • Onset of action
    The amount of time required for this medicine to show its action is not clinically established.
  • Duration of effect
    The amount of time for which this medicine remains active in the body is not clinically established.
  • Safe with alcohol?
    Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.
  • Is it habit forming?
    No habit-forming tendencies were reported.
  • Usage in pregnancy?
    This medicine is not recommended for use in pregnant women unless absolutely necessary. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before receiving this medicine.
  • Usage while breast-feeding?
    This medicine is not recommended for use in breastfeeding women unless absolutely necessary. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before receiving this medicine. Your doctor may advise you to discontinue the drug or to discontinue breastfeeding based on your clinical condition

Allergy

This medicine is not recommended for use in patients with a known allergy to interferon alpha or any other inactive ingredients present along with it.

Autoimmune hepatitis

This medicine is not recommended for use in patients with autoimmune hepatitis, chronic hepatitis with cirrhosis of the liver or who are being treated with immunosuppressive agents due to the increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition.
Warnings for special population

Pregnancy

This medicine is not recommended for use in pregnant women unless absolutely necessary. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before receiving this medicine.

Breast-feeding

This medicine is not recommended for use in breastfeeding women unless absolutely necessary. All the risks and benefits should be discussed with the doctor before receiving this medicine. Your doctor may advise you to discontinue the drug or to discontinue breastfeeding based on your clinical condition
General warnings

Severe allergic reactions

This medicine may cause severe allergic reactions. In case of any such reactions, treatment should be discontinued and appropriate medical therapy should be instituted immediately.

Psychiatric problems

Use of this medicine can cause life-threatening or fatal neuropsychiatric reactions. These include suicide, suicidal tendency, depression, and an increased risk of relapse of recovering drug addicts. Educate the patients and their caregivers to report any symptoms of depression or suicidal tendency to the doctor so that counseling and monitoring of progress can be performed at regular intervals.

Bone marrow suppression

Use of this medicine can cause bone marrow depression. Severe decreases in white blood cell or platelet counts have been reported with this medicine. Close monitoring of blood cell count and symptoms for any infections should be monitored. Appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Autoimmunity

Use of this medicine can develop different auto-antibodies in the body which may lead to various autoimmune disorders. Close monitoring of symptoms, auto-antibodies, and TSH levels are recommended.

Use in Children

This medicine is not recommended for use in patients below 18 years of age since the safety and efficacy of use are not clinically established. However, your doctor may prescribe this medicine if the benefits significantly outweigh the risks. In such a case, the patient should be monitored closely for any adverse effects.

Driving or Operating machinery

Use of this medicine may cause blurred vision or dizziness in some patients. It is advised that you do not perform any activities such as driving a vehicle or operating machinery if you experience any of these symptoms during treatment with this medicine.

Missed Dose

Since this medicine is administered in a healthcare setup the chances of missed dose are less. The missed dose of this medicine should be administered as soon as possible. It is advisable to skip the missed dose if it is already the time for your next scheduled dose. Do not double the dose to make up for the missed dose.

Overdose

Since this medicine is administered in the hospital or clinical setting by a qualified healthcare professional, the likelihood of an overdose is very low. However, emergency medical treatment will be initiated by the doctor if an overdose is suspected.
All drugs interact differently for person to person. You should check all the possible interactions with your doctor before starting any medicine.
Interaction with Alcohol

Description

Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.

Instructions

Interaction with alcohol is unknown. It is advisable to consult your doctor before consumption.
Interaction with Medicine

Adalimumab

Bexarotene

Clozapine

Atorvastatin

Deferiprone

Disease interactions

Kidney Disease

This medicine should be used with caution in patients with renal dysfunction due to increased risk of worsening of the condition. Close monitoring of renal function, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Autoimmune disorders

This medicine should be used with extreme caution or should be avoided in patients with autoimmune diseases due to increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition. Close monitoring, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Liver Disease

This medicine should be used with caution in patients with liver dysfunction due to increased risk of worsening of the condition. Close monitoring of liver function, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Cardiovascular disease

This medicine should be used with caution in patients with cardiac dysfunctions such as hypertension, arrhythmias, angina, myocardial infarction, cardiomyopathy, and congestive heart failure due to increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition. Report any unusual symptoms to the doctor on priority. Close monitoring of cardiac function, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

CNS disorders

This medicine should be used with caution in patients with seizures, psychiatric disorders or conditions affecting posture or gait due to increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition. Report any unusual symptoms to the doctor on priority. Close monitoring, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Thyroid disorders

This medicine should be used with caution in patients with thyroid abnormalities due to increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition. Report any unusual symptoms to the doctor on priority. Close monitoring of thyroid levels, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Diabetes Mellitus

This medicine should be used with caution in patients with diabetes mellitus due to increased risk of precipitation of ketoacidosis. Close monitoring of blood glucose, appropriate dose adjustments or replacement with a suitable alternative may be required in some cases based on the clinical condition.

Bone marrow suppression

This medicine should be used with caution in patients suffering from bone marrow suppression due to the increased risk of worsening of the patient's condition. Close clinical monitoring of hematopoietic function is recommended. An alternative treatment option should be considered in some cases based on the clinical condition.
Food interactions
Information not available.
Lab interactions
Information not available.
Administer this medicine as advised by the doctor. It should be given in multiple cycles along with other antiviral agents. It is important to receive every scheduled dose. The blood cells, liver function, CNS disorders, cardiac function, renal function should be assessed before starting the treatment. Any signs and symptoms of psychiatric, heart and liver dysfunction should be reported to the doctor on priority.
Miscelleneous

Usage does not depend on food timings

To be taken as instructed by doctor

May cause sleepiness

How it works
It works by promoting certain reactions in the infected cells which prevent viral replication and suppression of viral multiplication. Its anticancer mechanism is by slowing the growth and spread of certain tumor cells.
Legal Status

Approved

Unknown

Unknown

Approved

Classification

Category

Antineoplastic interferons

Schedule

Schedule H

[Internet]. Dailymed.nlm.nih.gov. 2018 [cited 7 December 2018]. Available from:

https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?setid=f96495b5-1ffe-432c-adcf-b2db9cfd1405

[Internet]. Medicines.org.uk. 2018 [cited 7 December 2018]. Available from:

https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/1117/smpc#

[Internet]. Chemocare.com. 2018 [cited 7 December 2018]. Available from:

http://chemocare.com/chemotherapy/drug-info/interferon-alfa.aspx

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Information on this page was last updated on 4 Feb 2019

Disclaimer

We’ve made all possible efforts to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, however, it should not be treated as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Practo only provides reference source for common information on medicines and does not guarantee its accuracy or exhaustiveness. The absence of a warning for any drug or combination thereof, should not be assumed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for any given patient. Practo does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information provided above. If you have any doubts about your medication then we strongly recommend that you consult with your doctor, nurse or healthcare provider. See detailed T&C here.