The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
Interferon Beta-1b (Extavia) for Multiple Sclerosis
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The FDA has approved a new interferon beta-1b product (Extavia – Novartis) for treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS). Extavia is identical to Betaseron (Bayer); both are produced in the same factory and packaged separately.

CLINICAL STUDIES — Many clinical trials have found interferon beta-1b effective for treatment of multiple sclerosis. It has been shown to increase the time to first relapse, reduce the annual relapse rate and increase the percentage of relapse-free patients.1 A 3-year follow-up of one study showed that, compared to placebo, early treatment with interferon beta-1b in patients with a first clinical demyelinating event and an abnormal brain MRI was associated with a 40% risk reduction in sustained disability, and delayed development of clinically definite MS and radiographically definite ... more      

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Title: Interferon Beta-1b (Extavia) for Multiple Sclerosis
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