Brevibloc

1 What is Brevibloc?

Brand: Brevibloc, Esmolol HCI

Generic: Esmolol

Esmolol, also known and sold under the trade names of Brevibloc and Esmolol HCI, is a product which belongs to the group of drugs known as beta blockers. 

It is used in the treatment of fast heartbeat and high blood pressure during surgery, after surgery, or during other medical procedures. It is used in order to help control abnormal heartbeats and heart rhythm. 

This medication is considered to work by affecting the response of nerve impulses in certain parts in the body, e.g. the heart. As a result, it slows the heartbeats and it decreases the blood pressure, increasing the amount of blood and oxygen to the heart. This medication is available in the form of a solution.

2 What to Know Before Using

Before the decision to start the treatment with this medication is made, it is essential to get informed about the expected beneficial effects, as well as, about the potential side effects and risks. 

For this decision to be made, the beneficial effects must outweigh the potential risks. This is a decision that you and your doctor, together, will have to make. During the consultations, it is important to inform the doctor about:

  • Allergies – Inform the doctor about any allergic reactions to any kind of medications, prescribed or not prescribed. Also, inform the doctor about any allergic reactions to any specific kind of food, dye, fabric and etc.
  • Pediatric – There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used within pediatric patients. This medication is not recommended to be used within pediatric patients. However, it could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks.
  • Geriatric – There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used within geriatric patients. This medication is not recommended to be used within geriatric patients. However, it could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks.
  • Pregnancy – Inform the doctor if you are currently pregnant or have any plans about pregnancy in the near future. There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used during pregnancy. It is unknown how would it affect the fetus. This medication is not recommended to be used during pregnancy. However, it could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks.
  • Breastfeeding – Inform the doctor if you are currently breastfeeding. There are no studies done that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used within nursing mothers. It is unknown if this medication is extracted in the milk, and how would it affect the infant. This medication is not recommended to be used within nursing mothers. However, it could be used only in cases where the beneficial effects outweigh the potential risks.
  • Drug interactions – Inform the doctor if you are currently using any other medications, prescribed or not prescribed, even vitamins and herbal tea. This is important because certain medications are not recommended to be used in a combination with others, due to the possibility that certain interactions could occur. However, sometimes the doctor may decide to use a certain type of combination, including two or more medications, to treat your condition, if he or she considers that combination to prove as beneficial regarding your condition.
  • Other interactions – Certain medications are not recommended to be used in a combination with specific type of food, tobacco and alcohol. Because of this, it is important to get informed if there is a need for you to follow a specific type of diet, and discontinue your use of tobacco and/or alcohol during the treatment.
  • Other medical problems – Inform the doctor about your medical history, any other medical problems and conditions from the past or at the moment. Especially, inform the doctor if there are any of the following conditions present – bradycardia, heart block, heart failure, diabetes, hypoglycemia, hypotension, kidney disease, or lung disease. 
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3 Proper Usage

For proper use, follow the directions given by your doctor. This medication is available in the form of a solution, for intravenous route. 

This medication is usually applied by the doctor or a healthcare professional, at the hospital. But, you as well could be trained to apply the medication at home. For the intravenous route, you or the healthcare professional would use a needle in a vein on your arm. 

The dose is individual for every patient, prescribed by the doctor and based on your condition and the prognosis of the treatment. In order to get the most beneficial effects from its use, it is important to remember to receive each dose regularly. 

If you forget a dose, visit the doctor or apply it yourself as soon as possible. This medication is harmful in case of an overdose. If an overdose is suspected, contact the doctor as soon as possible.

4 Precautions to Take

Visit your doctor regularly, at your scheduled appointments, so that he or she would be able to track your condition and make any adjustments if needed. 

These adjustments may refer to the dose – e.g. the doctor may decide to increase or decrease the dose, or to the treatment itself – the doctor may decide to discontinue your treatment, if there are any serious side effects present which would worsen your condition, or if your condition does not improve. 

Inform the doctor about any allergic reactions to any kind of medications, prescribed or not prescribed. This is important because this medication may contain inactive substances which could cause certain interactions to occur. Inform the doctor if you are currently pregnant or have any plans about pregnancy in the near future.

This medication is not recommended to be used during pregnancy, due to the lack of studies that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used during pregnancy. At least two proven forms of birth control should be used during the treatment with this medication, in order to help prevent pregnancy. Inform the doctor if you are currently breastfeeding. 

This medication is not recommended to be used within nursing mothers, due to the lack of studies that would confirm the safety of this medication to be used within nursing mothers.  Dizziness and blurred vision may occur. 

Avoid driving and any other activities which require alertness and clear vision during the treatment.

5 Potential Side Effects

Along with its expected beneficial effects, there are potential side effects which could occur. These side effects do not occur within all patients, also they could be mild or more serious. 

However, it is important to get informed about the potential side effects so that you would be able to notice their presence and inform the doctor as soon as possible for further directions.

Common side effects:

  • dizziness
  • fainting
  • blurred vision
  • confusion
  • increased sweating and 
  • unusual tiredness and weakness

These are common side effects which are not considered as serious. However, if their presence persists or worsens, inform the doctor as soon as possible.

A very serious allergic reaction to this medication is not common. However, if you notice any of the following symptoms, inform the doctor as soon as possible – skin rash, itching/swelling of the face/tongue/hands/feet, trouble breathing, or severe dizziness

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