What is this medication?
EPINEPHRINE (ep i NEF rin) treats severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis) or sudden asthma attacks. It may also be used to treat low blood pressure and slow heart rate. It reduces the effects of an allergic reaction, such as trouble breathing or swelling of the face, lips, and throat. It also increases your heart rate and narrows your blood vessels, which helps stabilize your blood pressure.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Adrenalin
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of the following conditions:
- Diabetes (high blood sugar)
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Kidney disease
- Parkinson disease
- Thyroid disease
- An unusual or allergic reaction to epinephrine, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
This medication is injected into a vein, under the skin, or into a muscle. It is given by your care team in a hospital or clinic setting.
Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. While it may be given to children for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
What if I miss a dose?
This does not apply. This medication is not for regular use. It should only be used as needed.
What may interact with this medication?
Do not take this medication with any of the following:
- General anesthetics like desflurane, isoflurane, sevoflurane
This medication may also interact with the following:
- Antihistamines for allergy, cough, and cold
- Certain medications for blood pressure, heart disease, irregular heart beat
- Certain medications for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disorders
- Certain medications for Parkinson disease, like entacapone
- Ergot alkaloids like dihydroergotamine, ergonovine, ergotamine, methylergonovine
- MAOIs like Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate
- Phenothiazines like chlorpromazine, prochlorperazine, thioridazine
- Steroid medications like prednisone or cortisone
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Your condition will be monitored carefully while you are receiving this medication.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
- Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
- Heart attack—pain or tightness in the chest, shoulders, arms, or jaw, nausea, shortness of breath, cold or clammy skin, feeling faint or lightheaded
- Heart rhythm changes—fast or irregular heartbeat, dizziness, feeling faint or lightheaded, chest pain, trouble breathing
- Kidney injury—decrease in the amount of urine, swelling of the ankles, hands, or feet
- Pain, redness, or irritation at injection site
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
- Anxiety, nervousness
- Heart palpitations—rapid, pounding, or irregular heartbeat
- Muscle weakness
- Pale skin, loss of color in lining of the eyelids, inner mouth, or nails
- Tremors or shaking
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Where should I keep my medication?
This medication is given in a hospital or clinic. It will not be stored at home.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
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