immune globulin (intramuscular) (IGIM)
What is the most important information I should know about immune globulin intramuscular?
This medicine can cause blood clots. The risk is highest in older adults or in people who have had blood clots, heart problems, or blood circulation problems. Blood clots are also more likely during long-term bedrest, while using birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy, or while having a central intravenous (IV) catheter in place.
Call your doctor at once if you have chest pain, trouble breathing, fast heartbeats, numbness or weakness, or swelling and warmth or discoloration in an arm or leg.
What is immune globulin intramuscular (IGIM)?
Immune globulin is a sterile solution made from human plasma. It contains antibodies that protect you against infection from various diseases.
Immune globulin intramuscular (IGIM, for injection into a muscle) is used to prevent infection with hepatitis A in people who travel to areas where this disease is common. IGIM will not prevent hepatitis B.
IGIM is also used to help prevent infection after exposure to measles, chickenpox (varicella), or rubella.
IGIM should not be used in place of routine vaccination against polio, varicella, mumps, or rubella.
Immune globulin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using IGIM?
You should not use this medicine if:
- you have had an allergic reaction to an immune globulin or blood product; or
- you have immune globulin A (IgA) deficiency with antibody to IgA.
IGIM can cause blood clots, especially in older adults or in people with certain conditions. Tell your doctor if you have ever had:
- heart problems, blood circulation problems, or "thick blood";
- a stroke or blood clot;
- kidney disease;
- if you use estrogens (birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy);
- if you have been on long-term bedrest; or
- if you have a central intravenous (IV) catheter in place.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Immune globulin is made from donated human plasma and may contain viruses or other infectious agents. Donated plasma is tested and treated to reduce the risk of contamination, but there is still a small possibility it could transmit disease. Ask your doctor about any possible risk.
How should I use IGIM?
IGIM is injected into a muscle. A healthcare provider can teach you how to properly use the medication by yourself.
Read and carefully follow any Instructions for Use provided with your medicine. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you don't understand all instructions.
Prepare an injection only when you are ready to give it. Do not use if the medicine is cloudy, has changed colors, or has particles in it. Call your pharmacist for new medicine.
Do not inject IGIM into a vein or under the skin.
Your care provider will show you where on your body to inject IGIM.
You will need frequent blood tests. This medicine can affect the results of certain other medical tests you may need. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using immune globulin.
Store in the refrigerator, do not freeze. Throw away any IGIM not used before the expiration date on the medicine label.
Each vial (bottle) is for one use only. Throw it away after one use, even if there is still medicine left inside.
Use a needle and syringe only once and then place them in a puncture-proof "sharps" container. Follow state or local laws about how to dispose of this container. Keep it out of the reach of children and pets.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
What should I avoid while taking IGIM?
Do not receive a "live" vaccine while using immune globulin, and for up to 6 months after your last dose. The vaccine may not work as well and may not fully protect you from disease. Live vaccines include measles, mumps, rubella (MMR), rotavirus, typhoid, yellow fever, varicella (chickenpox), zoster (shingles), and nasal flu (influenza) vaccine.
What are the possible side effects of IGIM?
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have signs of a blood clot such as:
- shortness of breath, chest pain with deep breathing;
- rapid heart rate;
- numbness or weakness on one side of the body; or
- swelling and warmth or discoloration in an arm or leg.
Common side effects may include:
- pain or swelling where the medicine was injected.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What other drugs will affect IGIM?
Immune globulin can harm your kidneys, especially if you also use certain medicines for infections, cancer, osteoporosis, organ transplant rejection, bowel disorders, high blood pressure, or pain or arthritis (including Advil, Motrin, and Aleve).
Other drugs may affect immune globulin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.
Where can I get more information?
Your pharmacist can provide more information about immune globulin intramuscular.
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.
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