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Label Changes for:

Precedex (dexmedetomidine hydrochloride) injection

October 2010

Changes have been made to the WARNINGS, PRECAUTIONS and ADVERSE REACTIONS sections of the safety label.

Detailed View: Safety Labeling Changes Approved By FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) – October 2010



  • Intensive Care Unit Sedation: With administration up to 7 days, regardless of dose, 12 (5%) Precedex subjects experienced at least 1 event related to withdrawal within the first 24 hours after discontinuing study drug and 7 (3%) Precedex subjects experienced at least 1 event 24 to 48 hours after end of study drug. The most common events were nausea, vomiting, and agitation. Tachycardia and hypertension requiring intervention in the 48 hours following study drug discontinuation occurred at frequencies of <5%. If tachycardia and/or hypertension occurs after discontinuation of Precedex supportive therapy is indicated.
Tolerance and Tachyphylaxis
  • Use of dexmedetomidine beyond 24 hours has been associated with tolerance and tachyphylaxis and a dose-related increase in adverse reactions


  • Adverse reactions associated with infusions greater than 24 hours in duration include ARDS, respiratory failure, and agitation.


  • In an in-vitro human placenta study, placental transfer of dexmedetomidine occurred. In a study in the pregnant rat, placental transfer of dexmedetomidine was observed when radiolabeled dexmedetomidine was administered subcutaneously. Thus, fetal exposure should be expected in humans, and Precedex should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefits justify the potential risk to the fetus.
  • Teratogenic effects were not observed in rats following subcutaneous administration of dexmedetomidine during the period of fetal organogenesis (from gestation day 5 to 16) with doses up to 200 mcg/kg (representing a dose approximately equal to the maximum recommended human intravenous dose based on body surface area) or in rabbits following intravenous administration of dexmedetomidine during the period of fetal organogenesis (from gestation day 6 to 18) with doses up to 96 mcg/kg (representing approximately half the human exposure at the maximum recommended dose based on plasma area under the time-curve comparison). However, fetal toxicity, as evidenced….