1 What is Visipaque?

Brand: Visipaque, Visipaque RediFlo Cartridge

Generic: Iodixanol

Visipaque is a dye used to make internal organs more visible for imaging procedures like:

Visipaque contains iodine, which shows up clearly in X-ray films. Iodixanol is injected into the veins so they will clearly show up in imaging procedures.

Doctors find this very useful in diagnosing disorders of:

  • the brain
  • blood vessels
  • kidneys
  • other organs

According to the U.S Food and Drug Administration, Visipaque has same osmolality (concentration of particles) with the human blood. Visipaque should be used only according to doctor’s instructions.

2 What to Know Before Using

Your doctor will inform you of what you need to know before using Visipaque. Make sure to tell all your allergies before using Visipaque.

Mention allergies to drugs, food, dyes, animal products, and if you previously experienced sensitivities to Visipaque and other contrast medium dyes.

You cannot use Iodixanol if you have an allergy to iodine, iodine dyes, and shellfish. Tell the doctor if you are or suspected to be pregnant before taking Iodixanol.

Visipaque itself may not harm the unborn baby, but X-ray does. Visipaque can be safely used to children at least one year of age. Iodixanol is also safe for elderly patients.

Do not use Iodixanol in children who has recently used a laxative (stool softener) or has not eaten properly. Mention all your health problems before taking Visipaque.

The doctor needs to know if you have the following conditions before using Visipaque:

3 Proper Usage

Proper usage of Visipaque requires strict adherence to your doctor’s orders. Visipaque is injected into the veins (intravenous route).

The doctor will determine the amount of Visipaque to be injected based on the patient’s age and the target organs.

Only a health professional can give you Iodixanol. Care must be taken to avoid contamination and ensure sterility while the medication is administered.

Iodixanol is injected before the x-ray test. The doctor may also give you other medicines to reduce side effects.

After the test, the doctor will teach you to drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration. Dehydration can cause complications to the kidneys.

Older and elderly patients may need closer monitoring to make sure they do not become dehydrated after the test.

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Visipaque, there are some precautions you must take. If you experienced burning sensation, pain or swelling while Visipaque is injected, tell it to your caregivers immediately.

It is very important not to become dehydrated after taking Visipaque. Drink a glass of water at least every hour and have easy access to the toilet to urinate. Visipaque is eliminated in the urine, and can hurt the kidneys if you become dehydrated or unable to urinate.

Call the doctor right away if you become dehydrated (increased thirst, dry mouth, and weakness), have noticeably reduced urine output or have a fever after the test.

5 Potential Side Effects

Make sure you meet with your doctor in using Visipaque to avoid unwanted potential side effects.

Tell your doctor if you experienced the following after taking Visipaque:

  • Lightheadedness
  • Swelling
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Passing too little or no urine
  • Wheezing
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Seizures
  • Chest pain
  • High fever
  • Symptoms of problem in the thyroid – extreme tiredness, dry skin, joint stiffness or pain, muscle pain or weakness, hoarseness of voice, sensitivity to cold temperatures and weight gain
  • Heart attack symptoms – pain or pressure in the chest, pain that spreads to the jaw, shoulders or back, nausea and sweating
  • Stroke symptoms – sudden numbness or weakness especially on one side of the body, sudden severe headache, slurred speech, vision changes and problems with balance
  • Blood clot formation in the leg – sharp chest pain, sudden cough, wheezing, rapid breathing, coughing up blood or pink-colored sputum

You may feel the following after injection of Iodixanol. These side effects are not harmful to your health, but they can be bothersome:

  • Pain, warmth or cold sensation while Iodixanol was injected
  • Numbness or tingly sensation
  • Dizziness or sensation of spinning
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • A headache, anxiety or nervousness
  • Skin rash or itching
  • Unusual taste, usually metallic, in the mouth