Naloxone injection is used to prevent or reverse the effects of opiate (narcotic) overdose, including difficulty breathing, sleepiness, low blood pressure, and death. Naloxone injection is also used after surgery to reverse the effects of opiates given during surgery. Naloxone injection is given to newborns to decrease the effects of opiates received by the pregnant mother prior to delivery. Naloxone injection is also used to diagnose a suspected opiate overdose and to increase low blood pressure associated with septic shock (life-threatening infection). Naloxone injection is in a class of medications called opiate antagonists. It works by blocking the central nervous system effects of several types of opiate medications such as morphine, oxycodone, methadone or illegal substances such as heroin.
Naloxone injection comes as a solution (liquid) to inject intravenously (into a vein), intramuscularly (into a muscle), or subcutaneously (just under the skin). Naloxone injection may also sometimes be given intranasally (sprayed into the nose) using a special nasal spray device. It is usually given by intravenous injection for emergencies and to infants and children. Naloxone injection is usually injected as needed by healthcare professionals.
Some community overdose prevention programs provide emergency opiate overdose education and a take-home supply of naloxone for people who may abuse opiate medications and their family members, friends, or caregivers to use in case of an opiate overdose. If you, your family, a friend, or a caregiver has been trained in giving naloxone as an injection or as a nasal spray, follow the instructions carefully if you think an opiate overdose has happened. It is important to call 911 and get immediate emergency medical care for the person following use of naloxone.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
pain, burning, or redness at the injection site
uncontrollable shaking of a part of your body
pain, burning, numbness, or tingling in the hands or feet
hot flashes or flushing
rapid, pounding, or irregular heart beat
shortness of breath
difficulty breathing or wheezing
seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist (hallucination)
loss of consciousness
Naloxone injection may cause other side effects. Tell your doctor if you have any unusual problems while receiving this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].
Store it at room temperature and away from light. Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about naloxone injection.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
Last Revised - 07/18/2012
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, 2014. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.