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Important Safety Information

Do not take BETASERON® (interferon beta-1b) if you are allergic to interferon beta-1b, to another interferon beta, to human albumin, or mannitol. See additional Important Safety Information below.

Important Safety Information
Prescribing Information and Medication Guide
Do not take BETASERON® (interferon beta-1b) if you are allergic to interferon beta-1b, to another interferon beta, to human albumin, or mannitol.
See additional Important Safety Information below.

Common myths & facts

Make sure you have your facts straight about RRMS. Speak with your doctor and call a BETA Nurse at 1-800-788-1467.

Don't believe everything you hear about relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS). There are a lot of misconceptions. If you find yourself on information overload and aren't sure what to believe, always check with your healthcare provider. For a quick look at some common misconceptions, just click on the myths below.

MYTH #1: All treatments are the same

The fact is, although therapies may seem similar, there are some important differences you should be aware of.

When discussing treatment with your HCP, these are areas you should focus on:

  • The indications
  • The efficacy and safety profiles
  • How they need to be taken
  • Storage requirements
  • The support available

MYTH #2: There is no way to reduce flu-like symptoms

The fact is, there are steps you can take to help reduce flu-like symptoms. You should talk to your doctor about using over-the-counter pain relievers to help lessen flu-like symptoms.4 Additionally, gradually increasing the dose (called titration) can help you adjust to BETASERON therapy.4 Your healthcare team and BETA Nurse can suggest other ways to help manage certain side effects you may have.

MYTH #3: A few relapses per year is a normal part of RRMS

The fact is, several relapses a year means your current treatment may not be working for you. If that's happening to you, talk to your healthcare provider.

MYTH #4: I'm already on treatment—I should just stay with it

The fact is, we learn more about RRMS therapies every day. The treatment you began with may not be the right choice for you now. If you are having frequent relapses or are experiencing more side effects, you should speak to your healthcare professional about whether a different treatment may be right for you.

MYTH #5: I feel fine, so there's no reason to start treatment

The fact is, RRMS can be deceiving. Whether you're experiencing relapses or not, RRMS can be an active disease1. Remember, being free of symptoms doesn't mean you're free of RRMS.

MYTH #6: RRMS affects everyone the same way, so I should treat it the same way, too

The fact is, RRMS is unpredictable. After you've had a first event consistent with MS, there is no way to tell when relapses might occur or how severe the effects might be. While scientists continue to seek answers, some studies suggest the importance of starting treatment as soon as possible.1,5

Not every person living with RRMS is the same and there are important differences among treatments (see Myth #1). It's worth taking some time to look closely at all of them.

MYTH #7: I can deal with RRMS alone

The fact is, a good support system can make a real difference when you're dealing with RRMS. People like your healthcare team, family, and friends are your first line of support. You can also call an MS-trained BETA Nurse at 1-800-788-1467 anytime, even weekends and holidays.

MYTH #8: Injection site reactions are unavoidable

The fact is, injections site reactions (ISRs) may be reduced for some people. For example, patients taking BETASERON should rotate their injection sites to help lessen the chance of having a serious skin reaction. Speak to your healthcare professional for additional tips on how to minimize ISRs.

MYTH #9: All RRMS patient support programs are the same

The fact is, support programs differ in the level of support they offer. A good support program can help you with your therapy. You should familiarize yourself with what each program offers, such as copay assistance and access to MS-trained nurses. Find out what BETAPLUS® offers to see if it provides the right support for you and your needs.

MYTH #10: There are therapies without side effects

The fact is, every therapy has side effects. 4,6,7,8,9 Knowing more about each therapy can help you choose the one that's right for you.

Please see the Important Safety Information for BETASERON® (interferon beta-1b).

Indications

BETASERON® (interferon beta-1b) is a prescription medicine used to reduce the number of relapses in people with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS). This includes people who have had their first symptoms of multiple sclerosis and have an MRI consistent with multiple sclerosis. BETASERON will not cure MS but may decrease the number of flare-ups of the disease.


Important Safety Information

Do not take BETASERON (interferon beta-1b) if you are allergic to interferon beta-1b, to another interferon beta, to human albumin, or mannitol.

BETASERON can cause serious side effects, including:

Liver Problems Including Liver Failure. Symptoms of liver problems may include yellowing of your eyes, itchy skin, feeling very tired, flu-like symptoms, nausea or vomiting, bruising easily or bleeding problems. Your healthcare provider will do blood tests to check for these problems while you take BETASERON.

Serious Allergic Reactions. Serious allergic reactions can happen quickly and may happen after your first dose of BETASERON or after you have taken BETASERON many times. Symptoms may include difficulty breathing or swallowing, swelling of the mouth or tongue, rash, itching, or skin bumps.

Depression or Suicidal Thoughts. Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following symptoms, especially if they are new, worse or worry you: thoughts about suicide or dying, new or worse depression (sinking feeling or sadness), new or worse anxiety (feeling uneasy, nervous or fearful for no reason), trouble sleeping (insomnia), acting aggressive, being angry, or violent, acting on dangerous impulses, hallucinations, other unusual changes in behavior or mood.

Other possible serious side effects with BETASERON include:

Heart Problems. BETASERON may worsen heart problems including congestive heart failure. Symptoms of heart problems may include swollen ankles, shortness of breath, decreased ability to exercise, fast heartbeat, tightness in chest, increased need to urinate at night, not being able to lay flat in bed.

Injection Site Problems. Serious skin reactions can happen in some people including areas of severe damage to skin and the tissue below the skin (necrosis). These reactions can happen anywhere you inject BETASERON. Symptoms of injection site problems may include swelling, redness, or pain at the injection site, fluid drainage from the injection site, breaks in your skin or blue-black skin discoloration. Change your injection site each time you inject BETASERON as it will lessen the chance of you having a serious skin reaction. Avoid injecting BETASERON into an area of the skin that is sore, reddened, infected or has other problems.

Flu-like Symptoms. BETASERON can cause flu-like symptoms including fever, chills, tiredness, sweating, muscle aches when you first start to use it. These symptoms may decrease over time. Taking medicines for fever and pain relief on the days you are using BETASERON may help decrease these symptoms.

Seizures. Some people have had seizures while taking BETASERON, including people who have never had seizures before. It is not known if the seizures were related to MS, to BETASERON, or to a combination of both. If you have a seizure after taking BETASERON call your healthcare provider right away.

Blood Problems. You may have a drop in the levels of infection-fighting white blood cells, red blood cells, or cells that help you form blood clots. If drops in levels are severe, they can lessen your ability to fight infections, make you feel tired or sluggish or cause you to bruise or bleed easily.

Risk to Pregnancy:
BETASERON can harm your unborn baby. BETASERON may cause you to lose your baby (miscarry). If you become pregnant while taking BETASERON call your healthcare provider right away. You and your healthcare provider should decide if you should continue to take BETASERON.

Most Common Side Effects:
The most common side effects of BETASERON include low white blood cell count, increases in your liver enzymes, headache, increase in your muscle tension, pain, rash, problems sleeping, stomach pain, weakness. These are not all the possible side effects of BETASERON.

Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away. Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take and your medical conditions.

Please see the full Prescribing Information and Medication Guide for additional information and talk to your healthcare provider.