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Peginterferon Alfa-2b Side Effects

Extensive research on possible side effects of peginterferon alfa-2b has shown that fatigue, headaches, and nausea are some of the most commonly reported reactions to this drug. Most people who use it are likely to experience some sort of side effect. Although many reactions are generally mild and easy to treat, contact your healthcare provider right away if you develop depression, vision changes, or other serious problems.

An Introduction to Side Effects of Peginterferon Alfa-2b

Just like any medicine, peginterferon alfa-2b (PegIntron®, Sylatron®) can cause side effects. Most people using this medicine will develop some sort of adverse reaction. In many cases, the reactions are merely bothersome and not usually dangerous. In other cases, these problems may be so severe or dangerous that the medication must be stopped.
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with peginterferon alfa-2b. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)

Peginterferon Alfa-2b Side Effects to Report

Some side effects of peginterferon alfa-2b are potentially serious and should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider. These include but are not limited to:
  • Depression
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
  • Signs of heart problems, such as:
    • An irregular heart rhythm
    • Fainting
    • Chest pain
    • Vision or speech changes
    • Weakness or numbness in an arm or leg
    • A severe headache
  • Frequent or severe infections
  • Increased bleeding or bruising
  • Worsening of autoimmune disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus
  • Signs of dangerous intestinal problems, such as:
    • Bloody diarrhea
    • Abdominal (stomach) pain
    • Fever
    • Severe abdominal (stomach) pain
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Loss of appetite
  • Shortness of breath
  • Worsening in kidney function (typically in people who already have kidney problems)
  • High triglycerides
  • Signs of worsening liver problems, such as yellowing of the whites of the eyes or skin (jaundice) or elevated liver enzymes
  • Thyroid problems
  • Worsening of diabetes
  • Temporary decrease in growth (in children)
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, such as:
    • An unexplained rash
    • Hives
    • Itching
    • Wheezing
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Unexplained swelling.
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Peginterferon Alfa-2b Drug Information

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