Generic Name: alvimopan (AL vi MOE pan)
Brand Name: Entereg
What is alvimopan?
Alvimopan reduces certain side effects of narcotic medications that are often used to prevent pain caused by surgery.
Narcotic medications can cause stomach pain, bloating, nausea, vomiting, and constipation. These side effects can delay recovery in patients undergoing gastrointestinal surgery.
Alvimopan works by preventing these side effects without reducing the pain-relieving effects of the narcotic.
Alvimopan is used to speed recovery of stomach and intestinal functions after a gastrointestinal surgery, and to prevent side effects caused by narcotic medications.
Alvimopan may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about alvimopan?
You should not use this medication if you are allergic to alvimopan, if you have severe liver or kidney disease, or if you have used a narcotic medication within the past 7 days. Narcotic medications are used for moderate to severe pain. Some prescription cough medications also contain narcotics.
Before you receive alvimopan, tell your doctor if you have liver or kidney disease.
Alvimopan is given only in a hospital for a short period of time.
Tell your caregivers right away if you have pale skin, easy bruising or bleeding, painful or difficult urination, or confusion with uneven heart rate, leg discomfort, muscle weakness or limp feeling, and increased urination.
What should I discuss with my health care provider before I receive alvimopan?
You should not use this medication if you are allergic to alvimopan, if you have severe liver or kidney disease, or if you have used a narcotic medication within the past 7 days, such as:
codeine (Tylenol #3, Cheratuss, Guaiatuss);
fentanyl (Abstral, Actiq, Fentora, Duragesic, Ionsys, Lazanda, Onsolis);
hydrocodone (Lortab, Vicodin, Vicoprofen);
hydromorphone (Dilaudid, Palladone);
methadone (Methadose, Diskets, Dolophine);
morphine (Avinza, Kadian, MS Contin, Oramorph);
oxycodone (OxyContin, Combunox, Roxicodone, Percocet);
oxymorphone (Numorphan, Opana); or
To make sure you can safely take alvimopan, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
liver disease; or
FDA pregnancy category B. Alvimopan is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
It is not known whether alvimopan passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
How is alvimopan given?
Alvimopan is given only in a hospital for a short period of time.
You will receive your first dose of alvimopan up to 5 hours before your surgery. You will then be given additional doses two times per day for up to 7 days.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Because you will receive alvimopan in a clinical setting, you are not likely to miss a dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Since this medication is given by a healthcare professional in a medical setting, an overdose is unlikely to occur.
What should I avoid while receiving alvimopan?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Alvimopan side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Tell your caregivers at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating;
painful or difficult urination;
urinating less than usual or not at all;
confusion, uneven heart rate, extreme thirst, increased urination, leg discomfort, muscle weakness or limp feeling; or
chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling.
Less serious side effects may include:
stomach pain, indigestion;
nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
constipation, gas; or
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
Alvimopan Dosing Information
Usual Adult Dose for Gastrointestinal Surgery:
Accelerate the time to upper and lower gastrointestinal recovery following partial large or small resection surgery with primary anastomosis:
Initial dose: 12 mg orally once, administered 30 minutes to 5 hours prior to surgery
Maintenance dose: 12 mg orally twice daily beginning the day after surgery for a maximum of 7 days or until discharge
Maximum dose: Not to exceed 15 doses
What other drugs will affect alvimopan?
Tell your doctor about all other medications you are using, including cold or allergy medicine.
It is especially important to tell your doctor if you have taken a narcotic medication within the past 7 days. Narcotic medications are used for moderate to severe pain. Some prescription cough medications also contain narcotics. You may be more likely to have unpleasant effects on your stomach if you have recently taken a narcotic medication.
There may be other drugs that can interact with alvimopan. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.
More about alvimopan
- Other brands: Entereg
Compare with other treatments for:
Where can I get more information?
- Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about alvimopan
- Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
- Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
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