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Actimmune is a medicine used to reduce the frequency and severity of serious infections associated with chronic granulomatous disease (a genetic disorder that affects the functioning of some cells of the immune system). Actimmune is also used to slow the worsening of severe, malignant osteopetrosis (a genetic disorder that affects normal bone formation). Actimmune is injected subcutaneously (just below the skin).
How does this medication work?
Actimmune is a form of a protein called interferon gamma that is similar to a protein your body makes naturally. It has not yet been proven precisely how Actimmune works to successfully treat your condition.
What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?
What: Actimmune may help to lower the risk and severity of serious infections, and may also slow the worsening of osteopetrosis.
When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. It is important that you use Actimmune exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed.
How do I know it is working?
Your healthcare provider may ask you series of questions from time to time that will help assess how well your condition is controlled with treatment.
The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.
More common side effects may include: fever, headache, rash, chills, redness or tenderness at the injection site, tiredness, diarrhea.
Less common side effects may include:
Nervous system effects, such as decreased mental status, problems with walking, or dizziness.
Serious allergic reactions, with symptoms such as itching; rash; swelling of your face, eyes, lips, tongue, or throat; or trouble breathing.
Actimmune may also cause low blood cell or platelet (a type of blood cell that forms clots to help stop bleeding) counts, kidney problems, or increased liver function tests.
Do not use Actimmune if you are allergic to it, any of its ingredients, other types of interferon gamma proteins, or to Escherichia coli (a type of bacteria) derived products.
Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Actimmune. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have heart, liver, or kidney problems; seizures; if you are allergic to latex; or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.
Chronic Granulomatous Disease
Adults and children ≥1 year: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you or your child based on your condition.
Adults and children ≥1 month: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you or your child based on your condition.
Use Actimmune exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not use it more often or stop using it without first talking to your healthcare provider.
Your healthcare provider may administer the first dose of Actimmune to you. Do not attempt to self-inject without proper training.
If you experience flu-like symptoms, administering Actimmune at bedtime may reduce these side effects. Speak with your healthcare provider about appropriately using acetaminophen to reduce fever and headache.
Please review the instructions that came with your prescription on how to properly use Actimmune.
Do not shake Actimmune.
Do not drive, operate heavy machinery, or do other dangerous activities until you know how Actimmune affects you.
Do not mix Actimmune with other drugs in the same syringe.
If Actimmune is used with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. Actimmune may interact with numerous medications. Therefore, it is very important that you tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking.
The effects of Actimmune during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Do not breastfeed while you are using Actimmune. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
If you miss a dose of Actimmune, use it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not use two doses at once.
Store in the refrigerator. Do not freeze.
Unused vials of Actimmune can be stored at room temperature for up to 12 hours before using. Throw away if vials are not used within 12 hours. Do not return to the refrigerator.
In the event of a medical emergency call your doctor or 9-1-1 immediately. In the event of overdose, call your doctor or poison control for further instructions.
National Poison Control#: Call 1-800-222-1222
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