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methohexital (cont.)

What should I discuss with my health care provider before receiving methohexital (Brevital Sodium)?

You should not receive methohexital if you are allergic to it, or if you have:

  • porphyria (a genetic enzyme disorder that causes symptoms affecting the skin or nervous system); or
  • if you are allergic to any other barbiturate such as amobarbital (Amytal), butabarbital (Butisol), mephobarbital (Mebaral), secobarbital (Seconal), or phenobarbital (Solfoton).

To make sure you can safely receive methohexital, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
  • asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD);
  • anemia (lack of red blood cells);
  • an endocrine disorder;
  • liver disease;
  • high or low blood pressure;
  • heart disease, congestive heart failure; or
  • circulation problems.

FDA pregnancy category B. Methohexital is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether methohexital passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not receive this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How is methohexital given (Brevital Sodium)?

Methohexital is given as an injection into a muscle, or into a vein through an IV. This medication is also given rectally when used in young children. A healthcare provider will give you this injection in a clinic or hospital setting.

Methohexital should make you fall asleep very quickly.

Your breathing, blood pressure, oxygen levels, and other vital signs will be watched closely while you are receiving methohexital. You will also be watched closely while you are coming out of the anesthesia.

Drowsiness may last for several hours. You will need someone to drive you home from after you receive methohexital.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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