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is interferon/riba same as chemo?
I have a silly question.  I've heard that hcv treatment (interferon/riba) is similar to chemo.  Is it actually considered a form of chemo?  Interested because insurance won't pay for riba induced anemia (per hcv diagnosis) - but would cover it if I had cancer.  Just wondering...
Thx,
w.c. missy
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Avatar universal
i think interferon is technically a biotherapy as opposed to a chemotherapy.
its all very similar though, if you have some left after treatment you can use it for rat poison. dont be caught using it this way though, youll be arrested for cruelty to animals!
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146021 tn?1237208487
Some call it chemo, like me, because interferon was originally a form of chemo when we studied it in bio class in the the early 80's. Some tag it as an anti-viral. Too bad you're ins doesn't see that no matter how you get get drug induced anemia you deserve prescription relief.
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146021 tn?1237208487
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146021 tn?1237208487
Interferon in Oncological Practice: Review of Interferon Biology, Clinical Applications, and Toxicities:

....."IFN is a promising but incompletely understood anticancer agent."

Source:http://theoncologist.alphamedpress.org/cgi/content/full/6/1/34#SEC15
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I think its the active main ingredient in BLACK FLAG....Ant and Roach killer
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Interferon has been used as a "chemo" agent in the treatment of malignant melanoma, hairy cell leukemia and a couple of other rare cancers.  I'd say that it qualifies as a chemotherapy drug.  Interferon (not alpha - I think beta), has been used for people with MS.  I met a lady who had to go on a year's worth of it for her MS.  

Susan
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for the chemo world outside of hepatitis (i guess that would be cancer mostly) how common are long continuous treatments of 12 months or more? i thought this was the exception rather than the rule.
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Thanks so much - all your comments & suggestions were very helpful!
peace,
w.c. missy
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I believe that interferon works in an entirely different way than standard anti cancer drugs.  Most of them attack fast growing cells that unfortunately include hair and many other cells important to us humans.

Interferon changes the way certain genes are expressed and turns on the antiviral capabilities of our own immune systems.  I do not claim to understand this at all.
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Interferon is produced by the body naturally......And it is a cancer drug....
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I have been dealing with insurance company
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my friend read up on hepc i guess..and she said it sounded like taking  RAID ! Ha!
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Most insurance companies use the strategy of deny most every claim and see what happens.  For most cases, this saves them a lot of money, since most people just accept it.  I fight every denial and have alway won - so far!  

In all states, these are regulated industries and most policies read that they will pay for treatment as long as it is not experimental.

Riba treatment for HepC is NOT experimental.  So if the insurance company says they will not pay for Procrit, make them justify the denial.
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Lots of insurance companies don't cover procrit for HCV treatment induced anemia--only for cancer chemo anemia. I've heard that docs can get around this by "coding" it in a way that meets the insurance companies requirements--not sure I want to know exactly what that means. My insurance company would only cover Procrit if I went to the Docs office and got the injections there. I was only on it briefly, but my doctor ended up giving me samples. Might ask yours how he will deal with the insurance challenge in order to keep your RIBA dosing at max levels for your weight should you develop anemia during treatment.
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86075 tn?1238118691
Chemo is derived from chemical therapy, and I'd guess that Riba is pretty much a chemical therapy, with the interferon synthsized?
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86075 tn?1238118691
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Interferon is a form of chemotherapy. It is a chemical used to treat many different things..each with various results.  I used the 4 week high dosage interferon treatment.  My hair cells, though I didnt lose them, went dormant. My hair didnt grow but I still shed my hair as usual. So it was definitely noticeable. I did become depressed and made my way out of it without drugs ( well some alcohol) I went through this about 2  years ago and am still having side effects. I throw up all of the time.  I could go for 2 weeks without vomitting and then throw up for 3 days straight. I have 2 more years for the melanoma to most likely reoccur,. I think I will go homeopathic if ti does happen again. Easier said than done though.
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This is a long time ago, buy anyways.

With my deepest respect to ALL patients.
With respect to ALL medical specialist who try to do and write good.

I will tell you exactly what Interferon is (combined with Ribavirine).
It is living in Sodom and Gomorrah with the seven plagues of Egypt coming down on your head. (and staying)
I cannot ask human beings to understand, because it is not human.
I can tell, after a failed 6 months treatment in 2006, and 8 months as from 2012 and still 3 months to go.

My heart goes out to anybody that's suffering.
If Hillary says she will fight regimes that use chemical weapons on their population. Please put my country on that list.

Paul
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4950316 tn?1394188185
Perfect analogy. Just imagine it with Telaprovir in the mix.
Spitting razor blades and shards of glass from anus is a new trick.
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4950316 tn?1394188185
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230202 tn?1370797179
I asked my nurse at the time if it was chemo and she told me it wasn't -- it was a form of Immunotherapy but that was with the combo Pegasys Interferon 180mcg and 800mg Ribavirin .
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To bad your insurance is being tight with your health, but not uncommon. Also, another aspect of this is your physician... how much work his office is willing to go through fighting in your behalf. I had to have Nupogen the last 2 months due to an ANC below 500 but didn't run into any trouble though my doc said it might be an insurance problem... hence the insurance companies are obviously not on the same page. Horribly short sighted when you consider the ramifications to you (less odds of success if riba interruption or decrease) and cost to them in the long run (increased need for transplant). I had BC/BS PPO. Good luck.
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1856046 tn?1330240845
From Merriam-Webster:

Definition of CHEMOTHERAPY

: the use of chemical agents in the treatment or control of disease (as cancer) or mental illness

It comes from the combination of chem for chemicals and hemo for blood - putting chemicals in the blood...
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2059648 tn?1439770265
From Encyclopaedia Britannia

Chemotherapy - The treatment of diseases by compound.  

Encylopaedia Britannia tells the story of the man who gave chemotherapy
it's name.  Also, the many applications chemotherapy has been used for.
Cancer is only one of the diseases chemotherapy is used to treat.      Chemotherapy is also taken in pill form.  Chemotherapy is a sign of cancer therapy to the general public.  You can find many sites online that directly reference chemotherapy to cancer.  Cancer is a highly recognized disease
and chemotherapy is often referenced as the path to getting rid of cancer.
Chemotherapy is a medical term that includes many different kinds of drugs.
Caner drugs are some of the drugs on that list.  

See "chemo are.com/".  Click on the Drug information tab.  It might surprise you what's on that list.

When you are feeling the pain of post Hepatitis C Treatment - It may be
beneficial for you to look at post chemotherapy and compare the post
symtoms of Hepatitis C treatment

Survivor of Cancer, Hepatitis C and Chemotherpy
The further away from EOT......The better it gets.

Happy : )
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2059648 tn?1439770265
see "chemocare.com/" for a list of chemotherapy drugs.

Sorry... my phone is in the correct mode and hard to correct :)
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