NOREPINEPHRINE BITARTRATE- norepinephrine bitartrate injection, solution, concentrate
Norepinephrine bitartrate injection is indicated to raise blood pressure in adult patients with severe, acute hypotension.
Address hypovolemia before initiation of norepinephrine bitartrate injection therapy. If the patient does not respond to therapy, suspect occult hypovolemia [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
Dilute norepinephrine bitartrate injection prior to use [see Dosage and Administration (2.3)].
Infuse norepinephrine bitartrate injection into a large vein. Avoid infusions into the veins of the leg in the elderly or in patients with occlusive vascular disease of the legs [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]. Avoid using a catheter-tie-in technique.
When discontinuing the infusion, reduce the flow rate gradually. Avoid abrupt withdrawal.
After an initial dosage of 8 to 12 mcg per minute via intravenous infusion, assess patient response and adjust dosage to maintain desired hemodynamic effect. Monitor blood pressure every two minutes until the desired hemodynamic effect is achieved, and then monitor blood pressure every five minutes for the duration of the infusion.
Typical maintenance intravenous dosage is 2 to 4 mcg per minute.
Visually inspect norepinephrine bitartrate injection for particulate matter and discoloration prior to administration (the solution is colorless). Do not use the solution if its color is pinkish or darker than slightly yellow or if it contains a precipitate.
Add the content of one norepinephrine bitartrate injection vial (4 mg in 4 mL) to 1,000 mL of 5% Dextrose Injection, USP or Sodium Chloride Injection solutions that contain 5% dextrose to produce a 4 mcg per mL dilution. Dextrose reduces loss of potency due to oxidation. Administration in saline solution alone is not recommended.
Use higher concentration solutions in patients requiring fluid restriction. Prior to use, store the diluted norepinephrine bitartrate injection solution for up to 24 hours at room temperature [20°C to 25°C (68°F to 77°F)] and protect from light.
Avoid contact with iron salts, alkalis, or oxidizing agents.
Whole blood or plasma, if indicated to increase blood volume, should be administered separately.
Injection: 4 mg/4 mL (1 mg/mL norepinephrine base) sterile, colorless solution in a single-dose amber glass vial.
Administration of norepinephrine bitartrate injection to patients who are hypotensive from hypovolemia can result in severe peripheral and visceral vasoconstriction, decreased renal perfusion and reduced urine output, tissue hypoxia, lactic acidosis, and reduced systemic blood flow despite “normal” blood pressure. Address hypovolemia prior to initiating norepinephrine bitartrate injection [see Dosage and Administration (2.1)]. Avoid norepinephrine bitartrate injection in patients with mesenteric or peripheral vascular thrombosis, as this may increase ischemia and extend the area of infarction.
Gangrene of the extremities has occurred in patients with occlusive or thrombotic vascular disease or who received prolonged or high dose infusions. Monitor for changes to the skin of the extremities in susceptible patients.
Extravasation of norepinephrine bitartrate injection may cause necrosis and sloughing of surrounding tissue. To reduce the risk of extravasation, infuse into a large vein, check the infusion site frequently for free flow, and monitor for signs of extravasation [see Dosage and Administration (2.1)].
Emergency Treatment of Extravasation
To prevent sloughing and necrosis in areas in which extravasation has occurred, infiltrate the ischemic area as soon as possible, using a syringe with a fine hypodermic needle with 5 to 10 mg of phentolamine mesylate in 10 to 15 mL of 0.9% Sodium Chloride Injection in adults.
Sympathetic blockade with phentolamine causes immediate and conspicuous local hyperemic changes if the area is infiltrated within 12 hours.
Sudden cessation of the infusion rate may result in marked hypotension. When discontinuing the infusion, gradually reduce the norepinephrine bitartrate injection infusion rate while expanding blood volume with intravenous fluids.
Norepinephrine bitartrate injection elevates intracellular calcium concentrations and may cause arrhythmias, particularly in the setting of hypoxia or hypercarbia. Perform continuous cardiac monitoring of patients with arrhythmias.
Norepinephrine bitartrate injection contains sodium metabisulfite, a sulfite that may cause allergic-type reactions including anaphylactic symptoms and life-threatening or less severe asthmatic episodes in certain susceptible people. The overall prevalence of sulfite sensitivity in the general population is unknown. Sulfite sensitivity is seen more frequently in asthmatic than in non-asthmatic people.
The following adverse reactions are described in greater detail in other sections:
- Tissue Ischemia [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]
- Hypotension [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)]
- Cardiac Arrhythmias [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)]
The most common adverse reactions are hypertension and bradycardia.
The following adverse reactions can occur:
Nervous system disorders: Anxiety, headache
Respiratory disorders: Respiratory difficulty, pulmonary edema
Co-administration of norepinephrine bitartrate injection with monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors or other drugs with MAO-inhibiting properties (e.g., linezolid) can cause severe, prolonged hypertension.
If administration of norepinephrine bitartrate injection cannot be avoided in patients who recently have received any of these drugs and in whom, after discontinuation, MAO activity has not yet sufficiently recovered, monitor for hypertension.
Co-administration of norepinephrine bitartrate injection with tricyclic antidepressants (including amitriptyline, nortriptyline, protriptyline, clomipramine, desipramine, imipramine) can cause severe, prolonged hypertension. If administration of norepinephrine bitartrate injection cannot be avoided in these patients, monitor for hypertension.
Norepinephrine bitartrate injection can decrease insulin sensitivity and raise blood glucose. Monitor glucose and consider dosage adjustment of antidiabetic drugs.
Concomitant use of norepinephrine bitartrate injection with halogenated anesthetics (e.g., cyclopropane, desflurane, enflurane, isoflurane, and sevoflurane) may lead to ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation. Monitor cardiac rhythm in patients receiving concomitant halogenated anesthetics.
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