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Iodixanol (Injection)

eye-oh-DIX-a-nol

Medically reviewed on September 3, 2018

Commonly used brand name(s)

In the U.S.

  • Visipaque

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Solution

Therapeutic Class: Radiological Non-Ionic Contrast Media

Uses For iodixanol

Iodixanol injection is used to help diagnose or find problems in the brain, heart, head, blood vessels, kidneys, bladder, and other parts of the body. It is an iodinated contrast agent. Contrast agents are used to create a clear picture of the different parts of the body during certain medical procedures, such as CT scans and angiography.

Iodixanol is to be given only by or under the supervision of a doctor.

Before Using iodixanol

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 iodixanol, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to iodixanol 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.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of iodixanol injection in children 1 year of age and older. However, safety and efficacy have not been established in children younger than 1 year of age. Some pediatric patients with certain medical conditions may have more unwanted side effects which may require caution in patients receiving iodixanol.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of iodixanol injection in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving iodixanol.

Breast Feeding

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 iodixanol, 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 iodixanol 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.

  • Metformin

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 iodixanol. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Allergic rhinitis (hay fever) or
  • Allergy to a contrast agent, history of or
  • Allergy to iodine or
  • Asthma—Use with caution. May increase risk of having allergic reactions.
  • Autoimmune or other immunity disorders
  • Anuria (not able to pass urine) or
  • Blood vessel disease, severe or
  • Congestive heart failure or
  • Dehydration or
  • Diabetes or
  • Kidney disease or
  • Multiple myeloma (cancer of plasma cells) or
  • Paraproteinemia (high amount of paraprotein in the blood)—May increase risk of having kidney failure.
  • Blood clotting problems (eg, phlebitis, thrombosis) or
  • Heart or blood vessel disease or
  • Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) or
  • Kidney disease, severe or
  • Liver disease or
  • Pheochromocytoma (adrenal problem) or
  • Sickle cell anemia (inherited blood disorder)—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Homocystinuria (genetic disease)—Patients with this condition should avoid undergoing angiography because of the increase risk of having blood clotting problems.

Proper Use of iodixanol

A doctor or other trained health professional will give you iodixanol in a hospital. Iodixanol is given through a needle placed in an artery or a vein.

Drink extra fluids so you will pass more urine while you or your child are receiving iodixanol. This may help prevent kidney problems.

Precautions While Using iodixanol

It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child closely while you are receiving iodixanol. This will allow your doctor to see if the medicine is working properly and to decide if you should continue to receive it.

Iodixanol may cause heart attack, stroke, and blood clotting problems during angiographic procedures. Tell your doctor right away if you or your child has chest pain that may spread to your arms, jaw, back, or neck, trouble breathing, nausea, unusual sweating, faintness, coughing up blood, numbness or weakness in your arm or leg, or on one side of your body, sudden or severe headache, or problems with vision, speech, or walking after receiving iodixanol.

Severe kidney problems may occur after receiving iodixanol. This is more likely to occur if you receive too much of iodixanol. Tell your doctor right away if you or your child have the following symptoms after receiving the medicine: agitation, confusion, decreased urine output, dizziness, headache, muscle twitching, rapid weight gain, or swelling of the face, ankles, or hands.

Iodixanol may cause a serious type of allergic reaction including anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention. Tell your doctor or nurse right away if you or your child has a skin rash, itching, shortness of breath, sweating, swelling of the face, tongue, and throat, or tightness in the chest after you get the injection.

Serious skin reactions can occur with iodixanol. Check with your doctor right away if you have blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin, red skin lesions, severe acne or skin rash, sores or ulcers on the skin, or fever or chills while you are receiving iodixanol.

Check with your doctor right away if you have a fever, chills, cough, sore throat, swollen, painful, or tender lymph glands in the neck, armpit, or groin, or yellow skin or eyes while using iodixanol. These could be symptoms of a serious condition called drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS).

Tell your doctor right away if you or your child have mild, burning pain, feeling of warmth or coldness, peeling of the skin, redness, or swelling at the injection site.

Make sure your doctor knows if you or your child have had an allergic reaction to any dye or medicine given during a test or procedure.

While using iodixanol, you may be exposed to radiation. Talk with your doctor if you have concerns about this.

Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using iodixanol. Iodixanol may affect the results of certain medical tests.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Iodixanol 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:

Less common

  • Arm, back, or jaw pain
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • chest tightness or heaviness
  • fainting
  • fast or irregular heartbeat
  • nausea
  • sweating

Rare

  • Agitation
  • blurred vision
  • coma
  • confusion
  • cough
  • decreased urine output
  • depression
  • difficulty breathing
  • dilated neck veins
  • dizziness
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • extreme fatigue
  • fainting
  • feeling of warmth
  • headache
  • hostility
  • irregular breathing
  • irritability
  • lethargy
  • muscle twitching
  • noisy breathing
  • rapid weight gain
  • redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
  • seizures
  • severe or sudden headache
  • stupor
  • sudden loss of coordination
  • sudden slurring of speech
  • swelling of the face, hands, fingers, lower legs, ankles, or feet
  • vomiting

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  • Bad, unusual, or unpleasant (after) taste
  • burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, "pins and needles", tingling feeling
  • change in taste
  • diarrhea
  • feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • itching or skin rash
  • sensation of spinning

Rare

  • Acidic or sour stomach
  • anxiety
  • belching
  • continuing ringing or buzzing or other unexplained noise in the ears
  • decreased awareness or responsiveness
  • dry mouth
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • hearing loss
  • heartburn
  • hives or welts
  • hyperventilation
  • indigestion
  • restlessness
  • severe sleepiness
  • shaking
  • stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  • transient, mild, pleasant aromatic odor

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.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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