nitric oxide (inhalation gas)
What is the most important information I should know about nitric oxide?
To best participate in the care of your baby during treatment with this medicine, carefully follow all instructions provided by your baby's caregivers.
What is nitric oxide?
Nitric oxide is a gas that is inhaled. It works by relaxing smooth muscle to widen (dilate) blood vessels, especially in the lungs.
Nitric oxide is used together with a breathing machine (ventilator) to treat respiratory failure in premature babies.
Your baby will receive this medication in a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) or similar hospital setting.
Nitric oxide may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What should I discuss with my health care provider before my child receives nitric oxide?
To best participate in the care of your baby while he or she is in the NICU, carefully follow all instructions provided by your baby's caregivers.
How is nitric oxide given?
Nitric oxide is inhaled into the baby's lungs through the mouth or nose.
Your baby may also be using a breathing tube connected to a ventilator (a machine that moves air in and out of the lungs to help your baby breathe easier and get enough oxygen).
Nitric oxide is usually given for up to 14 days. You baby may need to be weaned off this medication slowly, using less and less before treatment is stopped completely.
Your baby's breathing, blood pressure, oxygen levels, and other vital signs will be watched closely during treatment with nitric oxide. This will help your doctor determine how long to continue treatment with nitric oxide. Your child may also need blood tests.
What happens if a dose is missed?
Since nitric oxide is given as needed by a healthcare professional, it is not likely that your baby will miss a dose.
What happens if an overdose is given?
Since nitric oxide is given in a controlled medical setting by a healthcare professional, an overdose is not likely to occur. However, an overdose of nitric oxide is not expected to produce life-threatening symptoms.
What should be avoided after my child receives nitric oxide?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions in feeding, medications, or activity after your baby has been treated with nitric oxide.
What are the possible side effects of nitric oxide?
Nitric oxide causes few side effects, but your baby may have noisy breathing, blood in the urine, or possibly a collapsed lung. There is also a possibility that the baby will have breathing difficulties after the nitric oxide treatment is stopped.
Some of these problems may require further treatment by health care professionals. Your baby will remain under constant supervision during treatment with nitric oxide.
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 nitric oxide?
Your baby's caregivers will manage and monitor all medications given to your baby during treatment in the NICU. A drug interaction between nitric oxide and other medications is not expected to occur.
Do not give any medications to your baby that have not been prescribed by the baby's doctor. This includes vitamins, minerals, or herbal products.
Where can I get more information?
Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about nitric oxide.
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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