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All about: Methergine

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Generic Name: methylergonovine (meth il er GON o veen)
Brand Names: Methergine

What is Methergine (methylergonovine)?

Methylergonovine is in a group of drugs called ergot alkaloids. It affects the smooth muscle of a woman's uterus, improving the muscle tone as well as the strength and timing of uterine contractions.

Methylergonovine is used just after a baby is born, to help deliver the placenta (also called the "afterbirth"). It is also used to help control bleeding and other uterine problems after childbirth.

Methylergonovine may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about Methergine (methylergonovine)?

This medication is to be used only after delivery of your baby. Methylergonovine may pass into breast milk in small amounts and could affect a nursing baby. In some cases, you will need to use this medication for up to 1 week after your baby is born. Talk with your doctor about whether you should breast-feed during that time. You may need to use a breast pump to establish and maintain your milk flow until your methylergonovine treatment is finished. Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. Symptoms of a methylergonovine overdose may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, numbness or tingling, muscle twitching, feeling light-headed, fainting, shallow breathing, coldness, or seizure (convulsions).

There may be other drugs that can affect methylergonovine. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with methylergonovine. The interaction could lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor. Do not increase or decrease the amount of grapefruit products in your diet without first talking to your doctor.

What should I discuss with my health care provider before taking Methergine (methylergonovine)?

You should not take this medication if you have:
  • high blood pressure;

  • toxemia of pregnancy; or

  • if your baby has not yet been born.

If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to take methylergonovine, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. It is to be used only after delivery of your baby. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. Methylergonovine may pass into breast milk in small amounts and could affect a nursing baby. In some cases, you will need to use this medication for up to 1 week after your baby is born. Talk with your doctor about whether you should breast-feed during that time. You may need to use a breast pump to establish and maintain your milk flow until your methylergonovine treatment is finished.

How should I take Methergine (methylergonovine)?

Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor.

Take this medicine with a full glass of water.

Methylergonovine should not be used for longer than 1 week unless your doctor has told you otherwise.

Store methylergonovine at room temperature away from light, moisture, and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. Symptoms of a methylergonovine overdose may include nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, numbness or tingling, muscle twitching, feeling light-headed, fainting, shallow breathing, coldness, or seizure (convulsions).

What should I avoid while receiving Methergine (methylergonovine)?

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with methylergonovine. The interaction could lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor. Do not increase or decrease the amount of grapefruit products in your diet without first talking to your doctor.

Methergine (methylergonovine) side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
  • increased blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision);

  • seizure (convulsions);

  • feeling light-headed, fainting;

  • pounding heartbeat;

  • chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling; or

  • hallucinations.

Other less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as:

  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;

  • leg cramps;

  • dizziness;

  • ringing in your ears;

  • stuffy nose; or

  • unpleasant taste in your mouth.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect Methergine (methylergonovine)?

Before taking methylergonovine, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:

  • zileuton (Zyflo);

  • antibiotics such as erythromycin (Ery-Tab, Erythrocin, E.E.S), clarithromycin (Biaxin), troleandomycin (Tao);

  • fluoxetine (Prozac), fluvoxamine (Luvox);

  • clotrimazole (Mycelex Troche), fluconazole (Diflucan), ketoconazole (Nizoral), itraconazole (Sporanox), voriconazole (Vfend);

  • other ergot medicines such as methysergide (Sansert), ergotamine (Ergostat, Medihaler, Cafergot, Ercaf, Wigraine), or dihydroergotamine mesylate (D.H.E., Migranal Nasal Spray); or

  • HIV medicines such as delaviridine (Rescriptor), indinavir (Crixivan), ritonavir (Norvir), saquinavir (Invirase), or nelfinavir (Viracept).

If you are using any of these drugs, you may not be able to use methylergonovine, or you may need dosage adjustments or special tests during treatment.

There may be other drugs not listed that can affect methylergonovine. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has more information about methylergonovine written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Methylergonovine is available with a prescription under the brand name Methergine. Other brand or generic forms may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 1.03. Revision Date: 03/06/2007 13:38:27.

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