Used in a medical test of your adrenal glands. Treats endocrine (gland and hormone) disorders, arthritis, lupus, skin disease, allergies, swelling, autoimmune disorders, asthma, and many other medical conditions.
H.P. ActharThere may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to corticotropin, or porcine protein (products made from pigs). You should not use this medicine if you have stomach ulcer, congestive heart failure, osteoporosis, fungal infections, or high blood pressure. You should not use this medicine if you have herpes infection of your eyes.
How to Use This Medicine:
- Your doctor will prescribe the exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given as a shot under your skin or into one of your muscles.
- A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
- You may be taught how to give your medicine at home. Make sure you understand all instructions before giving yourself an injection. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
- Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet you should follow.
- If you are using the gel form of this medicine, allow it to warm to room temperature before using it.
If a dose is missed:
- This medicine needs to be given on a fixed schedule. If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, call your doctor or pharmacist for instructions.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:
- If you store this medicine at home, keep it in the refrigerator. Do not freeze.
- Throw away used needles in a hard, closed container that the needles cannot poke through. Keep this container away from children and pets.
- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine, containers, and other supplies. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
- Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid:
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are using aspirin or diuretics ("water pills") such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide, Lasix®, Aldactazide®, Aldactone®, Dyazide®, Hyzaar®, Maxzide®, or Moduretic®.
- Talk to your doctor before getting flu shots or other vaccines while you are receiving this medicine. Vaccines may not work as well, or they could make you ill while you are using this medicine.
Warnings While Using This Medicine:
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breast feeding.
- Tell your doctor if you have myasthenia gravis, diabetes, tuberculosis (TB), thyroid disease, liver disease, kidney disease, or a bowel disorder called diverticulitis.
- Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
- This medicine may raise or lower your blood sugar, or it may cover up symptoms of very low blood sugar (hypoglycemia).
- Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. This medicine may affect the results of certain medical tests.
- Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
- Avoid people who are sick or have infections.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
- Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
- Blurred vision or severe pain in your eye.
- Dry mouth, increased thirst, muscle cramps, nausea, or vomiting.
- Gaining weight around your neck upper back, breast, upper back, breast, face, or waist.
- High blood pressure or uneven heartbeat.
- Increase in how much and how often you urinate, or increased thirst and appetite.
- Severe headache, seizures, or light-headedness.
- Severe pain in your back or spine.
- Shortness of breath, cold sweat, bluish-colored skin.
- Stomach ulcer or ulcers in your food pipe.
- Sudden and severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, or fever.
- Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Acne, redness in your face, bruising or darkening of your skin.
- Excessive sweating.
- Hair growth around lips or chin in women.
- Irregular menstrual periods.
- Muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness.
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
Last Updated: 1/4/2011
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