Compare Avonex vs. Betaseron

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

ADVERTISEMENT
Lowers the frequency of multiple sclerosis exacerbations.

Avonex (Interferon Beta-1A) is an injectable medicine effective for relapsing, remitting MS and has manageable side effects and weekly dosing.

2.7/ 5 average rating with 33 reviewsforAvonex
Helps prevent multiple sclerosis flare-ups.

Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b) is an injection that effectively treats relapsing multiple sclerosis. It's used every other day and has relatively few side effects.

3.5/ 5 average rating with 21 reviewsforBetaseron
Upsides
  • One of the main treatments for relapsing MS that has been around for many years.
  • Injections are given weekly, and not daily like other MS medications.
  • Helps reduce the frequency of MS relapse episodes.
  • Flu-like reactions are the most common side effects and usually go away with continued treatment or can be avoided by using over-the-counter pain and fever-reducing medicines before the injection (like acetaminophen or ibuprofen).
  • Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b) sometimes works better than other similar injectable medications.
  • Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b) may be less expensive than its alternatives.
Downsides
  • Injection site reactions are common, ranging from localized pain, redness, and swelling to severe skin dryness.
  • Flu-like symptoms are common after interferon injections.
  • It's not clear what type of problems occur if taken during pregnancy.
  • Blood testing is required before and during use of Avonex (Interferon Beta-1A).
  • May not be as effective as other interferons.
  • Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b) only comes as an injection, so you'll need to give yourself shots.
  • You may need to get blood work done regularly to monitor your blood cell counts.
  • Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b) needs to be used every other day, unlike similar medications that don't have to be taken as frequently.
  • Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b) isn't as effective as its alternative that's given in the hospital as an infusion.
ADVERTISEMENT
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Injection
  • Injection
Price
Lowest price
$7237.63
Find instant savings near you
Lowest price
$6268.54
Find instant savings near you
Want to save even more money?
Sign up now for a 30-day trial and save up to 95% at CVS, Kroger, Albertsons, and other pharmacies.
Learn more
Reviews
33 reviews so far
36%
saidit'sworth it
24%
saiditworked well
33%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Avonex (Interferon Beta-1A)?

Leave a review
21 reviews so far
57%
saidit'sworth it
48%
saiditworked well
38%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Betaseron (Interferon beta-1b)?

Leave a review
Side effects
29possible side effects
  • Headache
    57%
  • Flu-like symptoms
    49%
  • Myalgia
    28%
  • Asthenia
    24%
  • Pain
    23%
  • Nausea
    23%
  • Fever
    20%
  • Chills
    19%
  • Depression
    18%
  • Urinary tract infection
    17%
  • Dizziness
    14%
  • Upper respiratory tract infection
    14%
  • Sinusitis
    14%
  • Arthralgia
    9%
  • Abdominal pain
    8%
  • Injection site pain
    8%
  • Bronchitis
    8%
  • Infection
    7%
  • Injuction site inflammation
    6%
  • Injection site ecchymosis
    6%
  • Chest pain
    5%
  • Migraine
    5%
  • Alopecia
    4%
  • Eye disorder
    4%
  • Anemia
    4%
  • Injection site reaction
    3%
  • Toothache
    3%
  • Urine constituents abnormal
    3%
  • Vasodilation
    2%
See more detailed side effects
24possible side effects
  • Injection site reaction
    78%
  • Flu-like symptoms
    56%
  • Weakness
    53%
  • Headache
    50%
  • Pain
    42%
  • Rigid muscles
    40%
  • Fever
    31%
  • Muscle pain
    23%
  • Trouble sleeping
    21%
  • Rash
    21%
  • Chills
    21%
  • Lack of coordination
    17%
  • Abdominal pain
    16%
  • Swelling in the limbs
    12%
  • Urinary urgency
    11%
  • Skin disorder
    10%
  • Uterine bleeding
    9%
  • Chest pain
    9%
  • Impotence
    8%
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
    6%
  • High blood pressure
    6%
  • Shortness of breath
    6%
  • Malaise
    6%
  • Injection site tissue death
    4%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • History of depression or mental illness
  • Serious allergic reaction
    • Allergy to albumin
    • Prolonged use of Avonex (Interferon Beta-1A)
  • Liver damage
    • Alcohol use
    • Taking drugs that are liver toxic
    • History of liver disease
  • Injection site reaction
  • Heart problems
    • History of heart disease
  • Immune reactions
  • Albumin in the product
  • Seizures
    • History of seizures
  • Risk to fetus
    • Women of childbearing age
  • Bone marrow suppression
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Liver damage
    • Alcohol use
    • Taking other drugs that can hurt your liver
    • Active, or history of, liver disease
  • Serious injection site reactions
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • History of depression or mental illness
  • Heart problems
    • History of or current heart disease
  • Seizures
    • History of seizures
  • Lupus
See more detailed risks and warnings