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Caffeine

Pronunciation

Generic Name: caffeine (cah-FEEN)
Brand Name: Examples include NoDoz and Vivarin

Caffeine is used for:

Restoring mental alertness or wakefulness if you are experiencing fatigue or drowsiness. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It works by stimulating the brain.

Do NOT use caffeine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in caffeine

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using caffeine:

Some medical conditions may interact with caffeine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have anxiety, liver problems, insomnia (trouble sleeping), or heart disease

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with caffeine. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Quinolones (eg, ciprofloxacin) because side effects such as problems sleeping, nervousness, jitteriness, or anxiety may occur
  • Theophylline because its actions and side effects may be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if caffeine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use caffeine:

Use caffeine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Caffeine may be taken with or without food.
  • Do not exceed the recommended dose or take caffeine on a regular basis without checking with your doctor. Exceeding the recommended dose or taking caffeine regularly may be habit-forming.
  • If you miss a dose of caffeine and you are taking it regularly, take it as soon as possible. If several hours have passed or if it is nearing time for the next dose, do not double the dose to catch up, unless advised by your health care provider. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use caffeine.

Important safety information:

  • Caffeine may cause dizziness. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to caffeine. Using caffeine alone, with certain other medicines, or with alcohol may lessen your ability to drive or perform other potentially dangerous tasks.
  • Avoid large amounts of caffeine-containing foods and beverages, such as coffee, tea, cocoa, cola drinks, and chocolate. This includes any medicines that contain caffeine.
  • Caffeine is not to be used as a substitute for sleep.
  • Diabetes patients - Caffeine may affect your blood sugar. Check blood sugar levels closely and ask your doctor before adjusting the dose of your diabetes medicine.
  • Caffeine is not recommended for use in CHILDREN younger than 12 years of age. Safety and effectiveness in this age group have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant while taking caffeine, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using caffeine during pregnancy. It is unknown if caffeine is excreted in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you are using caffeine, check with your doctor or pharmacist to discuss the risks to your baby.

When used for long periods of time or at high doses, some people develop a need to continue taking caffeine. This is known as DEPENDENCE or addiction.

If you suddenly stop taking caffeine, you may experience WITHDRAWAL symptoms including dizziness, headache, unusual tiredness, irritability, muscle tension, or nausea.

Possible side effects of caffeine:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Dizziness; irritability; nausea; nervousness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); diarrhea; shakiness; trouble sleeping; vomiting.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include agitation; anxiety; confusion; frequent urination; irregular or fast heartbeat; muscle twitching; ringing in the ears; seizures; stomach pain; trouble sleeping.

Proper storage of caffeine:

Store caffeine at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C), in a tightly closed container. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep caffeine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about caffeine, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Caffeine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take caffeine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about caffeine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to caffeine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using caffeine.

Issue Date: December 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.4.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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