GENERIC NAME: ALFENTANIL - INJECTION (al-FEN-tuh-nill)
BRAND NAME(S): Alfenta
HOW TO USE: This medication is given by vein (slow IV injection or continuous infusion) as directed by a doctor. Alfentanil should be used only in a hospital or clinical setting that has proper monitoring and support equipment. The patient's breathing (oxygen saturation), blood pressure, and heart rate/rhythm (EKG) should be monitored while this drug is being used and throughout the recovery period. The dosage is based on the patient's medical condition and response to the medication. If there are questions regarding the mixing, dilution or administration of this drug, consult the pharmacy. The liquid should be checked for particles or discoloration. If present, the liquid must be discarded.
SIDE EFFECTS: Pain at the injection site, dizziness, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, and itching may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify the doctor. Inform the doctor immediately if any of these serious side effects occur: low or high blood pressure, slow or irregular heartbeat, tightness in the chest, trouble breathing. An allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely. If it occurs, it must be treated immediately. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include: rash, swelling, trouble breathing. If other effects not listed above occur, contact the doctor.
PRECAUTIONS: The doctor should be told of the patient's medical history, especially of: head injury, lung diseases, kidney or liver diseases, allergies (especially to narcotics). This drug will make the patient dizzy and/or drowsy. They should not engage in activities requiring alertness such as driving or using machinery until the effects of this drug have worn off. Patients should avoid drinking alcohol because it can intensify the dizziness or drowsiness effects of this drug. Caution is advised when using this drug in the elderly since they may be more sensitive to the effects of the drug. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with the patient. This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult the doctor before allowing the mother to breast-feed.
DRUG INTERACTIONS: The doctor should be told of all prescription and nonprescription medications the patient uses, especially of: MAO inhibitors used within the last 2 weeks (e.g., furazolidone, linezolid, phenelzine, procarbazine, selegiline, tranylcypromine), erythromycin, cimetidine. Report the patient's use of drugs that cause drowsiness, such as: sleeping pills, sedatives, tranquilizers, anti-anxiety drugs, other narcotic pain relievers (e.g., codeine), drugs for mood or emotional problems, anti-seizure drugs, muscle relaxants, anti- histamines that cause drowsiness (e.g., diphenhydramine). Additionally, many cough-and-cold medicines contain ingredients that cause drowsiness. Ask the patient if they use any. If needed, consult the pharmacy about the safe use of those products. Other medications should not be started without doctor or pharmacist approval.
OVERDOSE: If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US national poison hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canadian residents should call their local poison control center directly. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe trouble breathing (e.g., slow, labored breathing), very low blood pressure.
NOTES: Laboratory and/or medical tests will be performed to monitor the patient's progress.
MISSED DOSE: Not applicable.
STORAGE: Store at room temperature between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 to 25 degrees C) away from light and moisture.
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You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.