Drugs A - Z
Interferon Alfacon-1 (E. coli) Solution for injection
Generic Name: interferon alfacon-1
Brand Names: Infergen
What is this medicine?INTERFERON ALFACON-1 (in ter FEER on AL fa kon-1) helps your immune system work better. This medicine is used to treat hepatitis C.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- alcoholism or other drug abuse or addiction
- autoimmune disease like psoriasis, Raynaud's phenomenon, rheumatoid arthritis, or systemic lupus erythematosus-blood or bleeding disorders
- depression or mental disorders
- eye disorders
- heart disease
- immune system problems
- kidney disease
- liver disease
- lung disease
- stomach problems
- thyroid disease
- transplant recipient
- an unusual or allergic reaction to interferons, E. Coli protein, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medicine?This medicine is for injection under the skin. It is usually given by a health care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.
If you get this medicine at home, you will be taught how to prepare and give this medicine. Use exactly as directed. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take it more often than directed.
It is important that you put your used needles and syringes in a special sharps container. Do not put them in a trash can. If you do not have a sharps container, call your pharmacist or healthcare provider to get one.
A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
What if I miss a dose?If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you can. Wait at least 48 hours before taking your next dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medicine?
- zidovudine (AZT)
What should I watch for while using this medicine?Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. You will need regular blood checks.
Do not change brands without consulting your doctor or health care professional. Different brands of this medicine can act differently in your body. Check with your pharmacist if your refills do not look like your original product.
This medicine can cause flu-like symptoms especially during the first few weeks of treatment. These symptoms may include fever, chills, fatigue, muscle aches, nausea, and decreased appetite. If you get a fever or sore throat after the first few weeks of treatment, do not treat yourself. Call your doctor or health care professional as soon as you can if you think you have an infection.
Do not become pregnant while taking this medicine. Women should inform their doctor if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information.
This medicine can cause blood problems and may increase your risk to bruise or bleed. Call your doctor or health care professional if you notice any unusual bleeding. Be careful not to cut, bruise, or injure yourself because you may get an infection and bleed more than usual.
Be careful brushing and flossing your teeth or using a toothpick while receiving this medicine because you may get an infection or bleed more easily. If you have any dental work done, tell your dentist you are receiving this medicine.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
- allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
- breathing problems
- changes in vision
- chest pain or palpitations
- fast, irregular heartbeat
- fever or chills
- muscle aches
- pain, tingling, numbness in the hands or feet
- suicidal thoughts or other mood changes
- trouble passing urine or change in the amount of urine
- unusually weak or tired
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
- arm, back, or leg pain
- irritation at site where injected
- joint pain
- loss of appetite
- nausea or stomach upset
- stomach pain
- trouble sleeping
Where should I keep my medicine?Keep out of the reach of children.
Store in a refrigerator between 2 and 8 degrees C (36 and 46 degrees F). Do not freeze. Throw away any unused vials or syringes after the expiration date.
Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.