Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Bleeding: Epoprostenol prevents platelets in the blood from sticking together, which can put you at risk for bleeding. If you experience any signs or symptoms of bleeding (e.g., black and tarry stools, blood in the urine, easy bruising, cuts that won't stop bleeding), contact your doctor immediately. While you are taking this medication, your doctor should closely monitor your platelet counts with blood tests.
Drowsiness/reduced alertness: This medication may cause drowsiness ordizziness. Do not drive, operate machinery, or perform other potentially hazardous tasks until you have determined how this medication affects you.
Infection: Since this medication is given intravenously through a central venous catheter, this increases your risk of infections in the blood, which can be fatal. If you notice any signs or symptoms such as a sudden onset of fever, fatigue, or headache, contact your doctor immediately.
Giving the medication intravenously also puts you at increased risk of infections at the infusion site. Contact your doctor as soon as possible if you notice symptoms such as redness, tenderness, swelling, or pus at the infusion site.
Low blood pressure (hypotension): Epoprostenol works to reduce the pressure in the blood vessels by dilating the blood vessels. People being treated with epoprostenol should avoid situations that can further dilate their blood vessels, such as sitting in saunas, hot baths, and sunbathing.
Stopping the medication: When epoprostenol is stopped suddenly, or the dose is decreased by a large amount, symptoms of pulmonary hypertension may occur.If your epoprostenol infusion is stopped abruptly for some reason and you develop symptoms such as pain when breathing (dyspnea), dizziness, weakness, and fatigue, contact your doctor immediately.
Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Breast-feeding: It is not known if epoprostenol passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking this medication, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.
Children: The safety and effectiveness of using this medication have not been established for children.
Seniors: The safety of using this medication has not been established for seniors. Seniors may be at greater risk for side effects such as kidney, liver or heart problems and should be monitored closed.