Generic Name: sodium bicarbonate (SO-dee-um bye-KAR-boe-nate)
Brand Name: Generic only. No brands available.
Sodium bicarbonate is used for:
Treating metabolic acidosis (a condition in which there is too much acid in the body) and certain drug intoxications, and replacing bicarbonate lost due to severe diarrhea. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Sodium bicarbonate is an electrolyte. It works by neutralizing excess acid in the blood. It may also replace bicarbonate when there are excess losses from the body.
Do NOT use sodium bicarbonate if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in sodium bicarbonate
- you have alkalosis (too little acid in the body) or low blood levels of calcium or chloride
- you are vomiting
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using sodium bicarbonate:
Some medical conditions may interact with sodium bicarbonate. 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 congestive heart failure, liver problems, kidney problems, a decreased amount of urine or no urine, swelling (fluid retention), or rectal bleeding of unknown cause
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with sodium bicarbonate. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Sympathomimetics (eg, pseudoephedrine) because side effects may be increased by sodium bicarbonate
- Anorexiants (eg, phentermine), azole antifungals (eg, itraconazole), cephalosporins (eg, cephalexin), corticosteroids (eg, prednisone), corticotropin, lithium, or tetracyclines (eg, doxycycline) because effectiveness may be decreased by sodium bicarbonate
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if sodium bicarbonate 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 sodium bicarbonate:
Use sodium bicarbonate as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Sodium bicarbonate is usually administered as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. If you are using sodium bicarbonate at home, carefully follow the injection procedures taught to you by your health care provider.
- If sodium bicarbonate contains particles or is discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged in any way, do not use it.
- Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and away from pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Dispose of properly after use. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain local regulations for proper disposal.
- If you miss a dose of sodium bicarbonate, contact your doctor immediately.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use sodium bicarbonate.
Important safety information:
- Tell your doctor if you begin to experience irritability or muscle rigidity.
- LAB TESTS, including blood gas monitoring and blood electrolytes, may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using sodium bicarbonate during pregnancy. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you are using sodium bicarbonate, check with your doctor or pharmacist to discuss the risks to your baby.
Possible side effects of sodium bicarbonate:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. When used in small doses, no COMMON side effects have been reported with this product. Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); irritability; muscle spasms or twitching; pain, redness, or swelling at the injection site.
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 irritability; muscle rigidity; seizures.Proper storage of sodium bicarbonate:
Store sodium bicarbonate at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep sodium bicarbonate out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about sodium bicarbonate, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Sodium bicarbonate 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 sodium bicarbonate 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 sodium bicarbonate. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to sodium bicarbonate. 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 sodium bicarbonate.
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.
More sodium bicarbonate resources
- sodium bicarbonate Oral, Intravenous, Subcutaneous Advanced Consumer (Micromedex) - Includes Dosage Information
- sodium bicarbonate Concise Consumer Information (Cerner Multum)
- Sodium Bicarbonate Prescribing Information (FDA)
- Sodium Bicarbonate Professional Patient Advice (Wolters Kluwer)
- Sodium Bicarbonate Monograph (AHFS DI)