BRAND NAME(S): Glucagon

Medication Uses | How To Use | Side Effects | Precautions | Drug Interactions | Overdose | Notes | Missed Dose | Storage | Medical Alert

USES: Glucagon is a hormone that causes the liver to release glucose into the blood. It is used to quickly increase blood sugar levels in diabetics with low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). This medication may also be used during certain medical tests.

HOW TO USE: This medication is given as an injection either into a vein, an arm or leg muscle or under the skin as directed. The glucagon powder must first be dissolved using the diluting fluid provided. Use this medication immediately after it has been mixed. Unconscious patients usually return to consciousness within 5 to 20 minutes of receiving glucagon. Notify your doctor when a hypoglycemic episode has occurred so your insulin dose and diet may be adjusted if necessary. Closely monitor your blood sugar level to prevent it from getting too low. When used as a part of a medical test/procedure, you should be given sugar replacement immediately following the test to prevent low blood sugar.

SIDE EFFECTS: Nausea and vomiting may occur but are also signs of low blood sugar. Allergy symptoms such as skin rash and breathing trouble have been reported with this medication. Inform your doctor if you experience any of these effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

PRECAUTIONS: All patients with diabetes should have a glucagon emergency kit available. Friends and relatives of a diabetic patient should know the symptoms of hypoglycemia and be instructed how to administer glucagon if necessary. Detailed patient instructions are provided with the medication. Be sure to read them completely and ask your doctor or pharmacist any questions you may have. This medication should be used only if clearly needed during pregnancy. It is not known if this medication appears in breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding. Be aware of symptoms of hypoglycemia - stomach pain, anxious feeling, chills, cold sweats, confusion, cool skin, difficulty in concentrating, drowsiness, hunger, rapid heart rate, headache, nausea, vomiting, shakiness, unsteadiness, vision changes or weakness. Eat or drink a source of sugar if you experience these symptoms. Have someone take you to a hospital if your symptoms do not improve. If severe symptoms occur, diabetics should not eat or drink anything. Emergency medical aid is needed. After injection of glucagon, the patient must be turned on their side to avoid choking. The doctor must be called. The patient should regain consciousness in less than 15 minutes. If not, a second dose may be given. A sugar source should be given when the patient regains consciousness. Glucagon is only effective for 90 minutes and is to be used only until the patient is able to swallow. The blood sugar level should be kept up by eating snacks consisting of crackers, cheese, half a sandwich or a glass of milk. The blood sugar should be checked hourly for 3 to 4 hours after regaining consciousness.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Tell your doctor of all prescription and nonprescription drugs you may use. Do not start or stop any medicine 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 vomiting, diarrhea, and rapid pulse.

NOTES: Do not share this product with others.

MISSED DOSE: Check with your doctor.

STORAGE: Store vial at room temperature away from sunlight. Store reconstituted vial in the refrigerator. Discard after 3 months.

MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).


______________ is another term for type 2 diabetes. See Answer

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CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.