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Adrenaclick (Epinephrine) - Warnings and Precautions

 
 



WARNINGS

Adrenaclick should only be injected into the anterolateral aspect of the thigh. Accidental injection into the hands or feet may result in loss of blood flow to the affected area and should be avoided. DO NOT INJECT INTO BUTTOCK. If there is an accidental injection into these areas, advise the patient to inform the healthcare provider of the accidental injection when he/she goes to the nearest emergency room for further treatment of anaphylaxis.

Avoid possible inadvertent intravascular administration. Large doses or accidental intravenous injection of epinephrine may result in cerebral hemorrhage due to a sharp rise in blood pressure. DO NOT INJECT INTRAVENOUSLY. Rapidly acting vasodilators can counteract the marked pressor effects of epinephrine if there is such inadvertent administration.

Epinephrine is the preferred treatment for serious allergic reactions or other emergency situations even though this product contains sodium bisulfite, a sulfite that may, in other products, cause allergic-type reactions including anaphylactic symptoms or life-threatening or less severe asthmatic episodes in certain susceptible persons. The alternatives to using epinephrine in a life-threatening situation may not be satisfactory. The presence of a sulfite in this product should not deter administration of the drug for treatment of serious allergic or other emergency situations, even if the patient is sulfite-sensitive.

Epinephrine should be administered with caution to patients with cardiac arrhythmias, coronary artery or organic heart disease, or hypertension. In patients with coronary insufficiency or ischemic heart disease, epinephrine may precipitate or aggravate angina pectoris as well as produce ventricular arrhythmias. It should be recognized that the presence of these conditions is not a contraindication to epinephrine administration in an acute, life-threatening situation.

Epinephrine is light sensitive and should be stored in the carrying-case provided. Store at room temperature (20-25C/68-77F) with excursions permitted to 15-30C (59-86F). Do not refrigerate; protect from freezing. Patients should periodically check the solution in Adrenaclick for any discoloration and/or precipitates. If the solution is discolored or contains a precipitate, the patient should replace their Adrenaclick.

PRECAUTIONS

(1) General

Adrenaclick is not intended as a substitute for immediate medical care. In conjunction with the administration of epinephrine, the patient should seek appropriate medical care. More than two sequential doses of epinephrine should only be administered under direct medical supervision.

Epinephrine is essential for the treatment of anaphylaxis. Patients with a history of severe allergic reactions should be instructed about the circumstances under which epinephrine should be used (See INDICATIONS AND USAGE Section). It should be determined that the patient is at risk of future anaphylaxis, since there are some concerns in specific patients with epinephrine administration. (a) Epinephrine should be used with caution in patients with cardiac arrhythmias, coronary artery or organic heart disease, hypertension, or in patients who are on medications that may sensitize the heart to arrhythmias, e.g., digitalis, diuretics, or anti-arrhythmics. In such patients, epinephrine may precipitate or aggravate angina pectoris as well as produce ventricular arrhythmias. (b) The effects of epinephrine may be potentiated by tricyclic antidepressants and monoamine oxidase inhibitors. (c) Some patients may be at greater risk of developing adverse reactions after epinephrine administration. These include patients with hyperthyroidism, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, and elderly individuals, and pregnant women. It must be noted that, despite these concerns, epinephrine is essential for the treatment of anaphylaxis. Therefore, patients with these conditions, or any other person who might be in a position to administer epinephrine to a patient with these conditions experiencing anaphylaxis, should be instructed about the circumstances under which epinephrine should be used.

(2) Information for Patients

Complete patient information, including dosage, directions for proper administration, and precautions, can be found inside each Adrenaclick package within the Patient Information Leaflet.

Epinephrine may produce symptoms and signs that include an increase in pulse rate, the sensation of a more forceful heartbeat, palpitations, a throbbing headache, pallor, feelings of overstimulation, anxiety, weakness, shakiness, dizziness, or nausea. These signs and symptoms usually subside rapidly, especially with rest, quiet, and recumbency. Patients with hypertension or hyperthyroidism may develop more severe or persistent effects, and patients with coronary artery disease could experience angina. Patients with diabetes may develop increased blood glucose levels following epinephrine administration. Patients with Parkinson's disease may notice a temporary worsening of symptoms.

(3) Drug Interactions

Patients who receive epinephrine while concomitantly taking cardiac glycosides or diuretics should be observed carefully for the development of cardiac arrhythmias.

The effects of epinephrine may be potentiated by tricyclic antidepressants, monoamine oxidase inhibitors, sodium levothyroxine, and certain antihistamines, notably chlorpheniramine, tripelennamine, and diphenhydramine.

The cardiostimulating and bronchodilating effects of epinephrine are antagonized by beta-adrenergic blocking drugs, such as propranolol. The vasoconstricting and hypertensive efffects are antagonized by alpha-adrenergic blocking drugs, such as phentolamine. Ergot alkaloids and phenothiazines may also reverse the pressor effects of epinephrine.

(4) Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility

There are no data from either animal or human studies regarding the carcinogenicity or mutagenicity of epinephrine, and no studies have been conducted to determine its potential for the impairment of fertility. This should not prevent the use of epinephrine under the conditions noted under INDICATIONS AND USAGE section.

(5) Pregnancy

Pregnancy Category C

Epinephrine has been shown to have developmental effects in rabbits at a subcutaneous dose of 1.2 mg/kg (approximately 30 times the maximum recommended daily subcutaneous or intramuscular dose on a mg/m2 basis), in mice at a subcutaneous dose of 1 mg/kg (approximately 7 times the maximum recommended daily subcutaneous or intramuscular dose on a mg/m2 basis), and in hamsters at a subcutaneous dose of 0.5 mg/kg (approximately 5 times the maximum recommended daily subcutaneous or intramuscular dose on a mg/m2 basis). These effects were not seen in mice at a subcutaneous dose of 0.5 mg/kg (approximately 3 times the maximum recommended daily subcutaneous or intramuscular dose on a mg/m2 basis). Although there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women, epinephrine crosses the placenta and could lead to fetal anoxia, spontaneous abortion or both. Therefore, epinephrine should be used in pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Page last updated: 2009-12-16

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