Extavia

Drug List

Extavia

Drug Name

Extavia (Interferon beta-1b)

Manufactured By

Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

Drug Savings

Nationwide Prescription Connection (NPC) is an experienced advocacy service that helps connect patients to manufacturer provided free and discount programs. We can help the uninsured, under insured, those in the Medicare gap also known as the "doughnut hole", or even those needing help with expensive co-pays.  Our web site makes it easy for you to enter the medications you are taking, along with some basic patient information, and then finds the program that is right for you.

Nationwide Prescription Connection (NPC) is an experienced advocacy service that helps connect patients to manufacturer provided free and discount programs. We can help the uninsured, under insured, those in the Medicare gap also known as the "doughnut hole", or even those needing help with expensive co-pays.  Our web site makes it easy for you to enter the medications you are taking, along with some basic patient information, and then finds the program that is right for you.

Class

Treats Disease/Condition

Uses

This medication is used to treat multiple sclerosis. Interferon is not a cure for multiple sclerosis, but it may help to decrease the number of attacks of weakness and slow the worsening of the disease. This medication is the same as a protein that your body naturally produces (interferon). In the body, it is thought to work by affecting the body's natural defenses (immune system) in many ways. Adding more interferon may help your body fight the effects of multiple sclerosis.

How To Use

Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start using this medication and each time you get a refill. Learn all preparation and usage instructions given by the manufacturer. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist. If you are giving this medication to yourself at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely. Inject this medication under the skin, usually every other day or as directed by your doctor. This medication is best used in the evening before bedtime to reduce side effects. Do not shake the vial. Doing so may decrease the effectiveness of the drug. It is important to change the location of the injection site with each dose to avoid problem areas under the skin. Therefore, choose a different injection site with each dose. The abdomen, thighs, upper arms, and buttocks are recommended sites for the injection. Do not inject into skin that is irritated, sore, or infected. Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Do not change the dose or how often you use this medication without your doctor's approval. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time each evening that you have a scheduled dose.

Side Effects

Injection site reactions (pain/swelling/redness), abdominal pain, constipation, diarrhea, upset stomach, and nausea may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Most patients have flu-like symptoms such as headache, tiredness, fever, chills, and muscle aches when they first start this medication. These symptoms usually last about 1 day after the injection and improve or go away after a few months of continued use. You can reduce these side effects by injecting this medicine at bedtime and using fever reducers/pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen before each dose. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more information. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: mental/mood changes (e.g., new or worsening depression, thoughts of suicide, psychosis), feeling too hot or cold (more than others around you), blue fingers/toes, unusual tiredness, gradual change in weight (without a change in diet or exercise), easy bleeding/bruising, persistent nausea/vomiting, pus or change in skin color at the injection site, stomach/abdominal pain, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, swelling ankles/feet, joint pain/swelling, signs of kidney problems (such as a change in the amount of urine), butterfly-shaped rash on the nose and cheeks. This medication may lower your ability to fight infections. This may make you more likely to get a serious infection or make any infection you have worse. Tell your doctor right away if you have any signs of infection (such as fever, chills, persistent sore throat, cough). Get medical help right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: chest pain, seizures. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Drug Interactions

Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval. Some products that may interact with this drug include: drugs that may affect your immune system (e.g., cancer chemotherapy, cyclosporine), hydroxyurea, telbivudine, theophyllines (e.g., aminophylline, theophylline).

In Case of Overdose

If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222

In Case of Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember, and contact your doctor to establish a new dosing schedule. Your next injection should be taken about 48 hours (2 days) after you actually take the missed dose. Do not use this medication 2 days in a row. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store the unmixed product at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets. If the mixed solution is not used immediately after mixing, refrigerate and use within 3 hours. Do not freeze. Discard any unused portions after 3 hours.