Health Guide
Drug Guide

Antivenin (CROTALIDAE) polyvalent immune fab (Intravenous route)

Pronunciation:

an-tye-VEN-in (kroe-TAL-i-dee) pol-ee-VAY-lent i-MUNE fab

Brand Names:

Dosage Forms:

Classifications:

Therapeutic

Antivenom

Uses of This Medicine:

Pit viper antivenin is a medicine used to treat the bites of certain poisonous snakes called pit vipers (crotalids), which are native to North America. This particular pit viper antivenin is made from the blood of sheep and is used to treat the bites of the following types of pit viper: the Western Diamondback, Eastern Diamondback, and Mojave rattlesnakes, and the Copperhead snake or Water Moccasin.

Pit viper antivenin is to be used only by or under the supervision of a doctor.

Before Using 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 this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Children

Although there is no specific information comparing use of pit viper antivenin in children with use in other age groups, this medicine is not expected to cause different side effects or problems in children than it does in adults.

Older adults

Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of pit viper antivenin in the elderly with use in other age groups.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy CategoryExplanation
All TrimestersCAnimal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.

Breast-feeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

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. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.

Other interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other medical problems

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

Proper Use of This Medicine:

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

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.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common
Unexplained bleeding or bruising
Less common
Cough
difficulty in breathing
difficulty in swallowing
dizziness or lightheadedness
fast heartbeat
fever
hives or welts
itching of skin
joint pain
large, hive-like swellings on the eyelids, face, lips, mouth, and/or tongue
muscle pain
noisy breathing
redness of skin
shortness of breath
skin rash
wheezing

Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:

Less common
Areas of pain, redness, and swelling
chest pain
chills
discharge from wound
pain, tenderness, and warmth at wound site
unusual tiredness or weakness

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common
Nausea
Less common
Back pain
generalized numbness, tingling, crawling, prickling, “pins and needles” feelings
hard bumps under the skin
loss of appetite
nervousness
numbness and tingling around the mouth
increased amount of phlegm

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Last Updated: 10/12/2016

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