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Gattex is a medicine used to treat short bowel syndrome (SBS) [a disorder where people are not able to absorb nutrients] in people who are on a special diet. Gattex is administered subcutaneously (just below the skin).
How does this medication work?
Gattex works by increasing blood flow to the intestines as well as by inhibiting the secretion of stomach acids.
What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?
What: By increasing the blood flow and reducing stomach acids, your body is able to absorb more nutrients from your intestines.
When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. It is important that you use Gattex exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed.
How do I know it is working?
Your healthcare provider may order tests regularly to check how well this medication is working.
The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.
More common side effects may include: stomach pain, injection site reactions, nausea, headaches, stomach bloating, upper respiratory infections.
Less common side effects may include:
Gattex can make abnormal cells that are already in your body grow faster. There is an increased risk that abnormal cells could become cancer.
Blockage in your bowel with symptoms such as constipation, trouble passing gas, stomach area pain or swelling, nausea, or vomiting.
Swelling or blockage of your gallbladder or pancreas with symptoms such as stomach area pain and tenderness, chills, fever, change in your stools, nausea, vomiting, dark urine, or yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.
Gallbladder or pancreas problems may occur with symptoms, such as pain in your stomach area, tenderness, nausea, vomiting, chills, fever, dark urine, change in your stools, or yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.
Fluid retention with symptoms such as swelling, shortness of breath, trouble breathing, and weight gain.
Do not use Gattex if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.
Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Gattex. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have a history of cancer or if you currently have cancer in your bowel; if you have heart, gallbladder, pancreas, or kidney problems; if you have polyps anywhere in your bowel or rectum; or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.
Adults: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on your body weight.
If you have kidney impairment, your healthcare provider may adjust your dose appropriately.
If your healthcare provider decides that you or your caregiver is able to give the Gattex injection at home, your healthcare provider will give you instructions on how to prepare and inject it.
Use Gattex exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed. Do not use extra doses or stop using Gattex without first talking to your healthcare provider.
Use Gattex within 3 hours after mixing it. Throw away any unused Gattex that has been mixed, even if there is medicine left in the vial.
Please review the instructions that came with your prescription on how to properly use Gattex.
Do not try to inject Gattex yourself until your healthcare provider has shown you how to inject it appropriately.
Do not shake the vial.
Do not miss any scheduled follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider.
If Gattex is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. Gattex may interact with numerous medications. Therefore, it is very important that you tell your healthcare provider about any other medications you are taking.
The effects of Gattex during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Do not breastfeed while you are using Gattex. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
If you miss a dose of Gattex, inject the missed dose as soon as you remember on that same day. Do not inject 2 doses on the same day.
Store at room temperature. Do not freeze.
In the event of a medical emergency call your doctor or 9-1-1 immediately. In the event of overdose, call your doctor or poison control for further instructions.
National Poison Control#: Call 1-800-222-1222
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