Reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome associated with interferon beta-1a use for multiple sclerosis

Mult Scler. 2016 Oct;22(12):1626-1628. doi: 10.1177/1352458516641774. Epub 2016 Mar 24.


Background: Reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome (RCVS) has been associated with multiple medications, cocaine, pregnancy, migraine, and other conditions.

Objectives: RCVS associated with interferon beta use has never before been described.

Methods: We describe the case of a 20-year-old female who developed acute onset severe headache and was found to have subarachnoid hemorrhage 2 months after initiating Rebif (Interferon beta-1a) for multiple sclerosis (MS). Cerebral angiography showed multiple areas of distal stenosis and dilatation with radiographic resolution 1 month later.

Results/conclusions: This is the first case report of RCVS in an MS patient treated with Rebif.

Keywords: Beta-interferon; Rebif; multiple sclerosis; reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / chemically induced*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunologic Factors / adverse effects*
  • Interferon beta-1a / adverse effects*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / drug therapy*
  • Syndrome
  • Vasoconstriction*
  • Young Adult


  • Immunologic Factors
  • Interferon beta-1a