Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Nov 3, 2022.
Commonly used brand name(s)
Pharmacologic Class: Sympathomimetic
Chemical Class: Alkylarylamine
Uses for epinephrine
Epinephrine solution is used for mydriasis (dilation or widening the pupil of the eye) during eye surgery.
Epinephrine is to be given only by or under the direct supervision of your doctor.
Before using epinephrine
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For epinephrine, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to epinephrine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of epinephrine solution in children.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of epinephrine solution in the elderly.
There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.
Interactions with medicines
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are receiving epinephrine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.
Using epinephrine with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.
Using epinephrine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
- Iobenguane I 123
- Methylene Blue
Using epinephrine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Interactions with food/tobacco/alcohol
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other medical problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of epinephrine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Allergy to sulfites or
- Asthma—Epinephrine contains sodium bisulfite, which can make these conditions worse.
- Angina (severe chest pain) or
- Arrhythmia or
- Diabetes or
- Heart or blood vessel disease or
- Hypertension (high blood pressure) or
- Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) or
- Parkinson's disease or
- Pheochromocytoma (adrenal disease) or
- Stroke, history of—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
Proper use of epinephrine
A doctor or other trained health professional will give you epinephrine. Epinephrine is used as an irrigating solution during eye surgery.
Precautions while using epinephrine
Your doctor will check your progress closely while you are receiving epinephrine. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to receive it.
Epinephrine side effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Incidence not known
- Blurred vision or other changes in vision
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
More about epinephrine ophthalmic
- Check interactions
- Side effects
- Dosage information
- During pregnancy
- Drug class: ophthalmic glaucoma agents
Related treatment guides
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.