Generic name: nesiritide (ne-SIR-i-tide)
Drug class: Vasodilators
Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Nov 6, 2020.
Commonly used brand name(s)
In the U.S.
Pharmacologic Class: Natriuretic Peptide
Uses for nesiritide
Nesiritide is used for patients who have severe congestive heart failure that has recently become worse. Nesiritide is for patients who are short of breath while at rest or with minimal activity.
Before using nesiritide
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 nesiritide, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to nesiritide 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.
Studies on nesiritide have been done only in adult patients, and there is no specific information comparing use of nesiritide in children with use in other age groups.
Nesiritide has been tested and has not been shown to cause different side effects or problems in older people than it does in younger adults.
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 taking nesiritide, 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 nesiritide 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 nesiritide. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
- Heart disease (other than congestive heart failure)—Nesiritide may make heart problems worse.
- Low blood pressure—Nesiritide may make this condition worse.
Proper use of nesiritide
The dose of nesiritide will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of nesiritide. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
- For injection dosage form:
- For congestive heart failure:
- Adults—Dose is based on your weight and must be determined by your doctor.
- Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
- For congestive heart failure:
Nesiritide 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 immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- Low blood pressure
- Bluish lips or skin
- chest pain, tightness, or discomfort
- cool, clammy skin
- difficulty in breathing or shortness of breath
- fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat
- unusual tiredness or weakness
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:
- Abdominal or stomach pain
- back pain
- burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, "pins and needles", or tingling feelings on the skin
- change in vision
- coughing or spitting up blood
- increased cough
- itching skin
- leg cramps
- pain or irritation at the injection site
- pale skin, unusual bleeding or bruising
- sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
- trembling or shakiness
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.
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Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.