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All about: Ultane Inhalation-Systemic

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Some commonly used brand names are:

In the U.S.—

  • Ultane

In Canada—

  • Sevorane

Category

  • Anesthetic, general

Description

Sevoflurane (see-voe-FLOO-rane) belongs to the group of medicines known as general anesthetics ( (an-ess-THET-iks) ). Sevoflurane is used to cause general anesthesia (loss of consciousness) before and during surgery. It is inhaled (breathed in). Although sevoflurane can be used by itself, combinations of anesthetics are often used together. This helps produce more effective anesthesia in some patients.

General anesthetics are given only by or under the immediate supervision of a doctor trained to use them. If you will be receiving a general anesthetic during your surgery, your anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist will give you the medicine and closely follow your progress.

Sevoflurane is available in the following dosage form:

  • Inhalation (U.S. and Canada)

Before Receiving This Medicine

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For sevoflurane, the following should be considered:

Allergies—Tell your doctor if you have or anyone in your family has ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to an anesthetic. Also tell your doctor if you are allergic to any other substances, such as foods, preservatives, or dyes.

Pregnancy—Sevoflurane has not been studied in pregnant women.

Breast-feeding—It is not known whether sevoflurane passes into breast milk. However, your doctor may want you to stop breast-feeding for about 24 hours after you receive the medicine.

Children—Sevoflurane has been tested in children. Sevoflurane may cause children to become agitated (excited) when it is used to start anesthesia when they are awake. Also, children receiving sevoflurane during surgery may become agitated as they awaken after surgery.

Older adults—Sevoflurane has been tested and does not cause different side effects in older people than in younger adults. However, older people usually need smaller amounts than younger people. Your doctor will consider your age in deciding on the right amount of sevoflurane for you.

Other medicines—Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving an inhalation anesthetic, it is especially important that your doctor know if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine including any of the following:

  • Aminoglycosides by injection (amikacin [e.g., Amikin], gentamicin [e.g., Garamycin], kanamycin [e.g., Kantrex], netilmicin [e.g., Netromycin], streptomycin [e.g., Strycin], tobramycin [e.g., Nebcin]) or
  • Capreomycin (e.g., Capastat) or
  • Clindamycin (e.g., Cleocin) or
  • Lincomycin (e.g., Lincocin) or
  • Polymyxins—Use of these medicines with sevoflurane may increase the effects of sevoflurane

Your doctor should be aware of any “street drugs” you are taking also.

Other medical problems—The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of sevoflurane. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Diseases that can cause muscle weakness, such as familial periodic paralysis, muscular dystrophy, myasthenia gravis, or myasthenic syndrome—Weakness may be increased
  • Head injury—Sevoflurane may make this condition worse
  • Kidney disease—Sevoflurane may make this condition worse
  • Liver disease—The effects of sevoflurane may be increased
  • Malignant hyperthermia, during or shortly after receiving an anesthetic (history of, or a family history of)—This side effect may occur again
  • Portwine stain—Sevoflurane may interfere with the laser treatment to remove portwine stain

Proper Use of This Medicine

Dosing—The dose of sevoflurane will be different for different patients. Your doctor will decide on the right amount for you, depending on:

  • Your age.
  • Your general physical condition.
  • The kind of surgery being performed.
  • Other medications you are taking or will receive before and during surgery.

Precautions After Receiving This Medicine

For patients going home within 24 hours after receiving this medicine:

  • Sevoflurane may cause some people to feel drowsy, tired, or weak for a while after they receive it. It may also cause problems with coordination and ability to think. Therefore, for about 24 hours (or longer if necessary) after receiving sevoflurane, do not drive, operate moving machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert .
  • Unless otherwise directed by your doctor or dentist, do not drink alcoholic beverages or take other central nervous system (CNS) depressants (medicines that may make you drowsy or less alert) for about 24 hours after you have received sevoflurane . Taking these medicines or drinking alcoholic beverages may add to the effects of sevoflurane. Some examples of CNS depressants are antihistamines or medicine for hay fever, other allergies, or colds; other sedatives, tranquilizers, or sleeping medicine, prescription pain medicine or narcotics; barbiturates; medicine for seizures; and muscle relaxants.

Side Effects of This Medicine

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention. While you are receiving and recovering from an inhalation anesthetic like sevoflurane, your health care professional will closely follow its effects. However, some effects may not be noticed until later.

The following side effects should go away as the effects of sevoflurane wear off. However, check with your doctor if any of them continue or are bothersome:

More common

Cough; dizziness; drowsiness; increased amount of saliva; nausea; shivering; vomiting

Less common

Headache

Other side effects may occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.

Revised: 12/11/1998

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