Interleukin-2 (Aldesleukin) - continuous infusion


What is Interleukin-2?

Interleukin-2 (also known as Aldesleukin and IL-2) is similar to a natural substance made by the body. Under normal circumstances, the body makes small amounts of Interleukin-2 that helps white blood cells fight infection. It is now possible to make Interleukin-2 outside of the body and to give humans much higher doses than their own bodies make. It is available as a clear liquid given by vein (IV).

How Interleukin-2 is given

Interleukin-2 will be infused through a CADD pump over a 24-hour period. The infusion should be changed in the Medicine Room every day. It is important to return to the Medicine Room around the same time each day to have a new dose of medicine connected to the CADD pump.

Possible side effects of Interleukin-2


  • Fevers and chills
  • Itching and rash
  • Flu-like symptoms like headache, tiredness, aches and pains

Later (more than a day after treatment starts)

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Feeling tired or weak
  • Feeling lightheaded or dizzy
  • Fainting spells
  • Blurred vision
  • Loss of appetite
  • Decrease in the amount of urine
  • Increased weight
  • Anemia
  • Low blood pressure

These are the most common side effects, but there may be others. Please report all side effects to the doctor or nurse.

In case of a severe side effect or reaction, call your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist at 595-3300. If you are outside the Memphis area, dial toll-free 1-866-2STJUDE (1-866-278-5833), and press 0 once the call is connected.

Special instructions for Interleukin-2

  • Notify your doctor right away if you have any of the following side effects while receiving Interleukin-2:
    • Chest tightness, wheezing, trouble breathing
    • Signs of infection such as fever or chills
    • Severe dizziness or passing out (signs of low blood pressure)
    • Change in clear, logical thinking
    • Swelling of legs or belly
    • Unusual weight gain
    • Unable to pass urine
    • Feeling extremely tired or weak
  • Check with your doctor before starting any new medicines, including over-the-counter, natural products, or vitamins.


This document is not intended to take the place of the care and attention of your personal physician or other professional medical services. Our aim is to promote active participation in your care and treatment by providing information and education. Questions about individual health concerns or specific treatment options should be discussed with your physician.

St. Jude complies with health care-related federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

ATTENTION: If you speak another language, assistance services, free of charge, are available to you. Call 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-866-278-5833 (TTY: 1-901-595-1040).

تنبيه: إذا كنت تتحدث باللغة العربية فيمكنك الاستعانة بخدمات المساعدة اللغوية المتوفرة لك مجانا. .يرجى الاتصال بالرقم. 5833-278-866-1  (الهاتف النصي: 1040-595-901-1).