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Heparin sodium injection is a blood thinner used to treat and reduce the risk of developing a blood clot in the legs, lungs, and arteries. It is also used to prevent blood clots in people undergoing certain types of surgeries. In addition, heparin sodium injection is used to treat atrial fibrillation (an irregular, fast heartbeat) in people who have an obstruction in their blood vessel. Additionally, it is used to treat disseminated intravascular coagulation (a bleeding and clotting disorder). Heparin sodium injection is also used to prevent the formation of clots during blood transfusions and dialysis. Heparin sodium injection is administered intravenously (through a vein in your arm) or subcutaneously (just below the skin).
How does this medication work?
Heparin sodium injection blocks the formation of substances in your body that help form blood clots, thereby lowering the chance of blood clots developing.
What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?
What: By lowering the chance of blood clots forming in your body, heparin sodium injection may reduce your risk of having a stroke, heart attack, or other serious conditions.
When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions.
How do I know it is working?
Your healthcare provider will order tests regularly and may ask you questions from time to time 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: severe bleeding; decrease in platelet (a type of blood cells that form clots to help stop bleeding); mild pain, irritation, bruising, or redness at the site of injection.
Less common side effects may include:
Serious allergic reactions with symptoms such as trouble breathing, wheezing, chills, fever, rash, or swelling of your face, mouth, throat, or tongue.
Decrease in platelet counts, with symptoms such as unusual bleeding or bruising, or a rash of dark red spots under your skin.
Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (a serious and life-threatening condition that causes an irreversible accumulation of platelets) that may lead to blood clots throughout the body.
Heparin sodium injection contains a preservative called benzyl alcohol. Benzyl alcohol can cause brain damage and other serious and possibly life-threatening side effects in newborns and premature babies. Preservative-free heparin sodium injection should be used in newborns and infants.
Your healthcare provider will not administer heparin sodium injection to you if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.
Your healthcare provider will not administer heparin sodium injection to you if you currently have active bleeding that cannot be controlled.
Your healthcare provider will not administer heparin sodium injection to you if you have an abnormally low amount of platelets.
Your healthcare provider will not administer heparin sodium injection to you if you have certain blood problems that interfere with blood tests.
Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with heparin sodium injection. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have bleeding problems, uncontrolled high blood pressure, stomach or intestinal ulcers, if you are scheduled for any surgery (including a dental procedure), 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 condition.
Children: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for your child, based on his/her body weight and condition.
If you are elderly, your healthcare provider may adjust your dose appropriately.
Your healthcare provider will administer heparin sodium injection to you. Follow your healthcare provider's directions exactly while you are receiving heparin sodium injection.
Do not take any over-the-counter medications, including aspirin and ibuprofen, without first talking to your healthcare provider.
Do not miss any follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider.
It is especially important to check with your healthcare provider before combining heparin sodium injection with the following: aspirin, antihistamines (such as diphenhydramine), blood thinners (such as warfarin), dextran, digoxin, dipyridamole, hydroxychloroquine, ibuprofen, indomethacin, nicotine, nitroglycerin, phenylbutazone, or tetracycline.
The effects of heparin sodium injection during pregnancy and breastfeeding are unknown. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.
Heparin sodium injection should be given under special circumstances determined by your healthcare provider. If you miss your scheduled dose, contact your healthcare provider for advice.
Your healthcare provider will store this medication for you.
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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