How to keep interferon cool when travelling

Hi I would like to introduce myself and ask for your advice. I'm 49 have ET and was diagnosed 6 years ago after a routine blood test showed platelet levels of 1900. Until recently this has been successfully controlled with Hydroxycarbamide. However I'm now on a cocktail of interferon 3 time's a week, 2 hydroxycarbamide tablets daily and 1 anagrelide which I will find out this week if it's working. I'm travelling to Italy soon and will be moving about from one place to another and wondered if anyone could help me on how to store the interferon injections whilst travelling so that they remain at a safe temperature and I have no trouble with customs. I already have a letter from the hospital so that part is covered but I'm worried if ice packs are allowed and are they the best thing. I've asked at several chemists but no-one gives a confident answer. Hope you can help

8 Replies

  • there are a variety of products available for diabetics to keep insulin cool which would work just as well for interferon I should think. they operate by soaking the inside pack in water for 20 mins which activates something (I'm no chemist!).

    Airport security seem to have no problem with them. Last time I travelled I didn't have a suitable product so used well wrapped mini icepacks whcih they were less happy with, insisting on unwrapping them...

    Look them up on the internet, I've forgotten the trade name.

  • There are wallets made to transport syringes and keep them cool. I use one to take my interferon syringes on planes etc in hand luggage. Not at home at present and struggling to remember the name but the pharmacist at my local boots put me onto it. I think frio are the manufacturers

  • I have successfully used the Frio (spelling) and carried both Interferon and Insulin this way without any problems.

  • Hi Pollution,

    I don't know if interferon has the same stockage requirements as Pegasys (pegylated interferon), but I always used 2 keep cold envelopes/sheaves one inside the other that the chemists gave me. For longer trips I used a picnic ice box that had been well cooled but was advised to avoid direct contact with the ice block itself. Apart from the transport phase itself, in the case of Pegasys, it is important that the syringe is at room temperature for the injection.

    Have a nice time in Italy.


  • Sorry - for some reason my auto-spelling corrector transformed Polly into pollution!!

  • Thank you so much for all your help and advice, i now know what works, and can stop worrying and look forward to my holiday

  • Hello I'm looking to talk to people with ET and who are on interferon pegasys please contact me on

    Thank you


  • I previously used this medication and travelled. I kept meds cold using a cooling lunch box (from Tesco's) and used cooler blocks that you place in the freezer. To keep a check on the temp I purchased from ebay a digital fish tank thermometer, Interferon needs to be keep colder than insulin and these methods aren't recommended for our meds, I checked with my consultant and the hospital pharmacy. If your on a plane you can also ask for ice if required. I managed a 20 hour journey and just about managed to keep meds at correct temp. You will also require a letter from you consultant to justify the meds and needles at the airports. I hope this has been helpful and enjoy your travels. x

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