Data from FDA - Curated by EPG Health - Last updated 01 April 2018


INDICATIONS AND USAGE SECTION Epinephrine is used to relieve respiratory distress due to bronchospasm, to provide rapid relief of hypersensitivity reactions to drugs and other allergens, and to prolong the action of anesthetics. Its cardiac effects may be of use in restoring cardiac rhythm in cardiac arrest due to various causes, but it is not used in cardiac failure or in hemorrhagic, traumatic, or cardiogenic shock. Epinephrine is used as a hemostatic agent. It is also used in treating mucosal congestion of hay fever, rhinitis, and acute sinusitis; to relieve bronchial asthmatic paroxysms; in syncope due to complete heart block or carotid sinus hypersensitivity; for symptomatic relief of serum sickness, urticaria, angioneurotic edema; for resuscitation in cardiac arrest following anesthetic accidents; in simple (open angle) glaucoma; for relaxation of uterine musculature and to inhibit uterine contractions. Epinephrine Injection can be utilized to prolong the action of anesthetics used in local and regional anesthesia.

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Advisory information

CONTRAINDICATIONS SECTION Epinephrine is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to sympathomimetic amines, in patients with angle closure glaucoma, and patients in shock (nonanaphylactic). It should not be used in patients anesthetized with agents such as cyclopropane or halothane as these may sensitize the heart to the arrhythmic action of sympathomimetic drugs. Addition of epinephrine to local anesthetics for injection of certain areas (e.g., fingers, toes, ears, etc.) is contraindicated because of danger that vasoconstriction may result in sloughing of tissue. Except as diluted for admixture with local anesthetics to reduce absorption and prolong action, epinephrine should not ordinarily be used in those cases where vasopressor drugs may be contraindicated, e.g., in thyrotoxicosis, diabetes, in obstetrics when maternal blood pressure is in excess of 130/80 and in hypertension and other cardiovascular disorders.
Special warnings and precautions
PRECAUTIONS SECTION Do not use the Injection if its color is pinkish or darker than slightly yellow or if it contains a precipitate. Do not administer unless solution is clear and container is intact. Discard unused portion. Although epinephrine can produce ventricular fibrillation, its actions in restoring electrical activity in asystole and in enhancing defibrillation of the fibrillating ventricle are well documented. The drug, however, should be used with caution in patients with ventricular fibrillation. Epinephrine should be used cautiously in patients with hyperthyroidism, hypertension and cardiac arrhythmias. All vasopressors should be used cautiously in patients taking monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors. Epinephrine should not be administered concomitantly with other sympathomimetic drugs (such as isoproterenol) because of possible additive effects and increased toxicity. Combined effects may induce serious cardiac arrhythmias. They may be administered alternately when thepreceding effect of other such drugs has subsided. Administration of epinephrine to patients receiving cyclopropane or halogenated hydrocarbon general anesthetics such as halothane which sensitize the myocardium, may induce cardiacarrhythmia. (See CONTRAINDICATIONS.) When encountered, such arrhythmias may respond to administration of a beta-adrenergic blocking drug. Epinephrine also should be used cautiously with other drugs (e.g., digitalis glycosides) that sensitize the myocardium to the actions of sympathomimetic agents. Diuretic agents may decrease vascular response to pressor drugs such as epinephrine. Epinephrine may antagonize the neuron blockade produced by guanethidine resulting in decreased antihypertensive effect and requiring increased dosage of the latter. Pregnancy Category C. Animal reproduction studies have not been conducted with epinephrine. It is also not known whether epinephrine can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman or can affect reproduction capacity. Epinephrine should be given to a pregnant woman only if clearly needed. Labor and Delivery. Parenteral administration of epinephrine if used to support blood pressure during low or other spinal anesthesia for delivery can cause acceleration of fetal heart rate and should not be used in obstetrics when maternal blood pressure exceeds 130/80. (See CONTRAINDICATIONS.)
Adverse reactions
ADVERSE REACTIONS SECTION Transient and minor side effects of anxiety, headache, fear and palpitations occur only with systemic therapeutic doses, especially in hyperthyroid individuals. Adverse effects such as cardiac arrhythmias and excessive rise in blood pressure may occur with systemic therapeutic doses or with inadvertent overdosage. Other adverse reactions include cerebral hemorrhage, hemiplegia, subarachnoid hemorrhage, anginal pain in patients with angina pectoris, anxiety, restlessness, headache, tremor, weakness, dizziness, pallor and respiratory difficulty. Such reactions are unlikely when epinephrine is diluted to 1:200,000 for injection with local anesthetic agents.

Usage information

Dosing and administration
DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION Subcutaneously or intramuscularly - 0.2 to 1 mL (mg). Start with a small dose and increase if required. Note: The subcutaneous is the preferred route of administration. If given intramuscularly, injection into the bottocks should be avoided. Hypersensitivity Reactions For bronchial asthma and certain allergic manifestations, e.g., angioedema, urticaria, serum sickness, anaphylactic shock, use epinephrine subcutaneously. The adult intravenous dose for hypersensitivity reactions or to relieve bronchospasm usually ranges from 0.1 to 0.25 mg injected slowly. Neonates may be given a dose of 0.01 mg per kg of body weight; for the infant 0.05 mg is an adequate initial dose and this may be repeated at 20 to 30 minute intervals in the management of asthma attacks. Cardiac Resuscitation A dose of 0.5 mL (0.5 mg) diluted to 10 mL with sodium chloride injection can be administered intravenously or intracardially to restore myocardial contractility. Intracardiac injection should only be administered by personnel well trained in the technique, if there has not been sufficient time to establish an intravenous route. External cardiac massage should follow intracardial administration to permit the drug to enter coronary circulation. The drug should be used secondarily to unsuccessful attempts with physical or electromechanical methods. Ophthalmologic Use Ophthalmologic use (for producing conjunctival decongestion, to control hemorrhage, produce mydriasis and reduce intraocular pressure) — use a concentration of 1:10,000 (0.1 mg/mL) to 1:1000 (1 mg/mL). Regional Anesthesia A final concentration of 1:200,000 of epinephrine injection is recommended for infiltration injection, nerve block, caudal or other epidural blocks. From 0.3 to 0.4 mg of epinephrine (0.3 to 0.4 mL of 1:1000 solution) may be mixed with spinal anesthetic agents. Parenteral drug products should be inspected visually for particulate matter and discoloration prior to administration. (See PRECAUTIONS.)

More information

Category Value
Agency product number YKH834O4BH
Orphan designation No
Product NDC 24357-911
Date Last Revised 27-03-2018
Marketing authorisation holder Focus Health Group