What are interferons and why are they needed?

Composition, release form and manufacturer

Interferon is a drug consisting of a mixture of various natural alpha interferons. Interferon inducers are obtained from human blood leukocytes. It has several release forms:

  • Lyophysiate (dried drug, frozen, later used to obtain a solution)
  • Ampoules 2 ml
  • Suppositories for rectal and vaginal use
  • Solution for injections or inhalations
  • Powder for making drops
  • Ointment
  • Aerosol
  • Microclysters
  • Pills

The main function of the drug is protection against nonspecific viral infection. The composition depends entirely on the form of release of the drug, and the packaging and its volume also depend on this.

There are several companies that produce Interferon; they are located in the United States of America, the Russian Federation, Israel, Switzerland and other countries.

Action of the medicine

Interferons are endogenous proteins that are produced by blood cells affected by viral infections. This drug is prescribed when it is necessary to treat acute respiratory viral infectious diseases. The use of interferon in the nose of children is indicated from birth, since the drug is absolutely safe. When the active substance of this drug enters the body, it causes increased production of the body’s own interferon, a substance aimed at fighting viruses. Currently, there are two types of interferons:

Molecular formula of interferon

  • obtained from donated blood infected with viruses;
  • obtained by using genetic engineering.

In the process of manufacturing antiviral drops, substances obtained by genetic engineering are used. Experts' opinions regarding the effectiveness of the drug may differ: some of them claim that the body's protective functions are enhanced, others say that when interferon enters, the body stops producing its own substance in the required quantity. Based on the fact that this substance can lead to a decrease in immunity, it is not recommended to use it more than 2 times a year.

Interferon is part of such popular nasal antiviral drugs as Grippferon and Nazoveron.


The main contraindications of Interferon are indicated in the instructions for use. These include:

  • Severe heart disease
  • Problems in the functioning of the kidneys and liver
  • Personal intolerance to the component composition
  • Cirrhosis
  • Epilepsy
  • Diseases of the central nervous system
  • Problems with the thyroid gland

The drug should not be given to children who were born prematurely or were born before 34 weeks of gestation. Contraindicated in case of unclosed intestinal bleeding. Particular caution should be exercised during pregnancy or lactation. The dosage and regimen of taking the drug should be agreed with your doctor. Mechanism of action of the drug

The main effect of Interferon is to inhibit the synthesis of viral proteins. The fight against the virus begins within a few hours after taking the medicine. The drug does not penetrate into the cell, but acts on membranes, coming into contact with specific receptors.

The maximum possible concentration of interferon in the blood is observed in the first 3-12 hours. The period of complete elimination is 2-7 hours. Within a day, no traces of it are found in the blood plasma at all.

The following effects occur on the body:

  1. Antiviral
  2. Antitumor

In the first case, the process of inhibiting the reproduction of viral cells occurs. In the second, the drug’s work is possible due to the content of the p53 protein. Regardless of the form of release and administration into the body, Interferon has 100% bioavailability, that is, it is completely absorbed by the body.

For more information about the use of Interferon, watch our video:

Instructions for use

The daily dosage and form of the drug used are determined by the doctor depending on the patient’s age, his diagnosis and the presence of concomitant pathologies.

For preventive purposes, Interferon against influenza or similar infections is used 4-5 times a week.

The most optimal form of release for this purpose is nasal drops for the nose. It is enough to drop 2 drops into each nostril.

If you use Interferon lyophysiate, then before injection you should dilute it in 2 ml of water. A similar method of use is suitable for diluting the medicine as a solution for inhalation.

The prepared solution should be stored for no more than a day. Suppositories are prescribed for the treatment of herpes and papillomavirus. 1-2 times a day, suppositories are administered rectally or vaginally for a course of no more than 10 days.

In the treatment of cancer, the medicine is administered intramuscularly. The dosage in each case is determined individually. When undergoing a course of chemical or radiation therapy, Interferon should be taken for another 14 days after completion.

Children's forms of release can be ointment, suppositories and drops. The dosage, as in the case of adults, is determined by the doctor. Can be used for infants.

For eye diseases, eye drops (2 pieces in each eye) Interferon are used. The daily dosage of instillation is no more than 6 times. When symptoms decrease, the dosage is halved. The permissible duration of the course is 1-1.5 weeks.

The ointment is used to prevent ARVI. The nasal passages should be lubricated with it twice a day for 1-3 weeks. Interferon in tablets can be taken no more than 2050 IU per kilogram of the patient’s weight. The total dosage should not exceed 1 million IU. The sooner a course of treatment or prevention with Interferon is started, the higher the effectiveness of the drug will be.

How to prepare Interferon solution for instillation into the nose, see our video:

Interferon nasal drops for children: how to use

How to drip for children depends on the age and type of medicine.

The prepared solution from the lyophilisate is used as follows:

  • Interferon is administered into the nose of children for preventive purposes, 5 drops twice a day with a break of at least 6 hours.
  • For Interferon treatment, children are administered 5 drops of solution every 2 hours for 3 days.

When choosing finished medications, you must be guided by the instructions for it and administer a certain amount to eliminate the possibility of developing side effects. Each drug contains a different amount of active ingredient, so you should not ignore the instructions, as this will lead to the development of undesirable consequences.

For babies. For first-year babies, interferon-based products can be instilled directly into the nasal passages or use cotton swabs soaked in 2-3 drops of the medicine. The use of sprays to treat children under 1 year of age is prohibited to avoid the development of complications.

Drops are allowed for use in strict accordance with the instructions for them.

Interferon during pregnancy. Interferon for the nose can be used during pregnancy, the dosage of the drug remains unchanged and corresponds to the administration of 5 drops every 2 hours for therapeutic purposes and twice a day for preventive purposes. But before use, it is recommended to consult a doctor about the advisability of using the drug and the need to take additional medications.

Side effects

When taking Interferon, no one is immune from adverse drug reactions. Most often, their manifestation occurs in the first 2 weeks of use. With further continuation of the course, the symptoms of side effects subside. The most common body reactions to Interferon are:

  1. Severe headaches
  2. Temperature rises to 38 degrees
  3. Fever
  4. Muscle pain
  5. Joint pain
  6. General malaise

Additionally, disturbances in the functioning of the digestive, cardiovascular and nervous systems, allergies, and problems with the functioning of the respiratory system may appear.

Effectiveness of nasal antiviral drugs

Antiviral nasal drops cause a lot of controversy among doctors and people far from medicine. Such drugs are used only in the post-Soviet space; European specialists do not prescribe them. This is explained by the unproven effectiveness of antiviral drugs and intranasal immunomodulators. There is information that such drugs, if used excessively, can cause serious disturbances in the functioning of the immune system - provoke autoimmune diseases. The experience of their use is not yet too long to allow such conclusions to be drawn.

Nevertheless, doctors continue to prescribe antiviral drugs for the nose. And consumers are actively buying drops and sprays in pharmacies. There are different reviews about such medicines on the Internet - from laudatory and enthusiastic to bewildered and abusive. Everyone has to draw their own conclusions.

Photo: DarkoStojanovic / Pixabay.com

Use during pregnancy

The use of Interferon during pregnancy and lactation is carried out under the supervision and with the permission of the attending physician. There are no registered cases of the drug having a negative effect on the development of the fetus and the body of the expectant mother.

When using the drug by a nursing mother, the baby's reaction should be observed. Interferon passes into breast milk in small concentrations, so an ambiguous baby’s reaction to it will be a reason to refuse the medicine.

Before conception, the course of treatment or prevention of viral infections using Interferon should be completed 3-6 months before the planned pregnancy. Contraception should be used while taking the medicine.

The most effective antiviral drugs

Treatment of viral diseases by nasal drops is carried out using:

  1. Grippferon.
  2. Interferon.
  3. Derinata.
  4. Ingaron.
  5. Viferon.
  6. Genferon.

The positive effect of using such drugs is achieved due to the presence of interferons in them - special compounds of protein origin that increase the resistance of cells to the destructive effects of viruses.

The listed medicines, to a certain extent, are the “property” of domestic manufacturers of pharmacological products.


This drug looks like a colorless or light yellow transparent liquid containing interferon alpha-2b (at least 10,000 IU per 1 ml of solution). The role of auxiliary components is given to sodium chloride, potassium dihydrogen phosphate, macrogol and other substances.

Treatment with Grippferon becomes relevant for acute viral respiratory infections (parainfluenza, influenza, adenovirus, RS-syncytial, rhinovirus infection). Immunostimulating drops are used in accordance with the recommendations of the instructions or the attending physician.

The standard dosage regimen is as follows:

  • newborn babies – 1 drop in each nostril, 5 times a day;
  • children from 12 months to 3 years – 2 drops alternately into both nasal passages, 3-4 times a day;
  • at 3-14 years old – 2 drops in the nasal passages, 4 to 5 times throughout the day;
  • adults and patients over 15 years old - 3 drops in both nostrils, 5-6 times a day.

Most often, the medicine is tolerated without complications. A contraindication to the use of antiviral nasal drops in adults or children is hypersensitivity to their composition. The cost of Grippferon is from 221 rubles. per bottle with 5 ml, from 240 rub. for 10 ml.


These nasal drops for influenza and ARVI are in the form of a mixture of various natural alpha-interferons obtained from human leukocytes. The product is widely used for therapeutic and prophylactic purposes. In addition to influenza and acute respiratory viral infections, this remedy allows for therapy and prevention of the development of viral hepatitis, HPV (human papillomavirus), and herpes. The medication finds its use in oncology, helps improve the condition of HIV-infected people and patients undergoing radiation exposure.

The daily dose of the drug and the duration of the therapeutic course are determined by the attending physician, based on the intensity of the main symptoms of the disease and the individual characteristics of the patient. The average dosage for adults is 2 drops 4-5 times during the day.

Conditions that act as contraindications to treatment with this drug include severe diseases of the liver, cardiovascular system, kidneys, intestinal hemorrhages, and endocrine disorders. The drug is used to a limited extent during the neonatal period in premature infants. Product price – from 89 rub.

For herpes or papillomatosis, Interferon is prescribed in the form of rectal suppositories.


Derinat is known as an immunomodulatory agent that increases the body's protective functions, restoring the mucous membranes of the nasopharynx after a viral infection. The medicine helps speed up the healing process and prevent the penetration of pathogenic organisms into the lower respiratory tract.

The nasal drops contain 0.25% sodium deoxyribonucleate, saline solution and purified water. The medicine is a clear, colorless liquid, without odors or impurities. The drug is prescribed if:

  1. Rhinitis, otitis, tonsillitis, sinusitis of viral, bacterial or fungal origin.
  2. The initial stage of influenza and ARVI.
  3. Infection with viruses of the upper respiratory tract.

Manifestations and symptoms of viral rhinitis

The drug helps stimulate the body's protective functions in patients who often suffer from colds or who have undergone surgical interventions on the ENT organs.

Dosages for adults:

  • prevention of viral infection - 4 times a day, 2 drops in each nostril;
  • acute stage of the disease - 3-5 drops in both nasal passages, 4 to 6 times during the day.

To prevent morbidity in children, Derinat is administered 1-3 drops several times within 24 hours. When acute symptoms of a viral disease appear, the medicine is dripped into the nasal cavity every 1.5-2 hours.

The list of drops to use is insignificant. The drug should not be prescribed if there is hypersensitivity to its components. During pregnancy and lactation, the product is used only after the approval of a specialist. You can buy this medication in pharmacies at a price of 227-256 rubles.


Ingaron is in the form of a lyophilisate (dried substance). The latter is used to prepare a solution for administration into the nasal cavity. The active component of the medicine is interferon gamma, placed in bottles.

The drug exhibits pronounced antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties, helps to increase the protective mechanisms of the human body, and blocks the viability of pathogenic agents.

Ingaron is approved for use from 7 years of age. When influenza and ARVI develop, the drug is instilled into the nose 5 to 8 times within 24 hours, 2 drops in each nostril. Before use, the lyophilisate is dissolved in 5 ml of water included in the package with the medicine. Duration of use – 5-7 days.

The product is contraindicated if the patient has an individual intolerance to interferon gamma or auxiliary components of the drug, diabetes mellitus, or autoimmune diseases. The minimum price for Ingaron is within 28 rubles.


The antiviral drug Viferon is widely used in pediatrics. Instillation of this product allows you to obtain a pronounced immunostimulating effect, relieve swelling and inflammation of the mucous membrane, and overcome the causative agent of the infectious process. The drops contain several components - interferon, a vitamin complex and purified water.

Antiviral nasal drops for children are recommended to be used as prescribed by a doctor in the event of the development of ARVI or viral rhinitis. The standard dosage regimen is as follows:

  1. At the age of less than 12 months - 1 drop in each nasal passage, 5 times within 24 hours.
  2. Children from 1 to 3 years old - four times a day, 2 drops in each nostril.
  3. Patients 3-14 years old - instillation is carried out while maintaining the previous dosage, increasing the frequency of use up to 5 times during the day.
  4. Adults and adolescents over 14 years of age – 3 drops 6 times a day.

The duration of therapy varies depending on the characteristics of the viral pathology. For the purpose of prevention, Viferon is instilled into the nasal cavity for 5-7 days, adhering to the age-specific dosage.

The instructions included with the drops do not contain a large list of contraindications. The main obstacle to the use of this medication is the presence of hypersensitivity to its components. The cost of drops is affordable for any budget, and often does not exceed 100 rubles. for a bottle.

To speed up recovery from a viral infection of the body, many experts recommend alternating the administration of Viferon into the nose with the use of saline solution (the drug is used for regular instillations).


The therapeutic effect of Genferon is aimed not only at the mucous membranes of the respiratory organs, but also at the entire body. Drops are prescribed to patients with viral, bacterial or allergic rhinitis, as an auxiliary medication in the development of respiratory diseases.

The drug, which is in drop form, is used to treat patients under 14 years of age. Due to the presence of interferon, this remedy provides good support for the immune system, helps suppress the activity of viral agents, and accelerates the onset of recovery.

Among the indications for the use of Genferon:

  • damage by influenza viruses;
  • ARVI;
  • sinusitis;
  • tracheitis;
  • laryngitis;
  • tonsillitis.

flu symptoms

During the newborn period, the dosage will be 1 drop (5 drops in each nostril during the day). At 1-3 years of age, children are prescribed 2 drops of the drug, three to four times a day. Dose after 3 years – 2 drops alternately in each nasal passage, no more than 5 times a day.

Genferon is not used if you are intolerant to any of its components. The drug is also contraindicated in patients with exacerbations of immune system diseases. Price for Genferon – from 26 rubles. per bottle with 10 ml of medicine.

special instructions

When prescribing Interferon, it is necessary to ensure that the patient does not have problems with the functioning of the cardiovascular system. It is not recommended for people who have recently had a heart attack.

For thrombocytopenia, the drug is administered strictly under the skin.

For people over the age of 65, the dosage is selected individually.

Interferon rectal suppositories are contraindicated in case of exacerbation of hemorrhoids or bleeding of its nodes. Suppositories are not prescribed for the external form of the disease.

When working with dangerous mechanisms, driving a car, or if high concentrations are required, patients should be careful when undergoing treatment with Interferon.


Interferon analogues are prescribed if the use of the drug itself is impossible due to personal intolerance or its use has caused severe adverse reactions.

Instead of medicine, you can use the following drugs from the list:

  • Laferobion (candles)
  • Inferon
  • Lokferon
  • Alfaferon
  • Anaferon

You can try using Interferon in a different form of release, if interchangeability is possible in the current situation.

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