What is Prussian blue?
Prussian blue was originally developed as a dye for use in paints and ink. It is used in medicine to help speed up the body's elimination of certain metals or chemical elements. It works by binding to the metals in the digestive tract to keep the body from absorbing them.
Prussian blue is used to treat people who have been contaminated with radioactive cesium or thallium, or non-radioactive thallium.
Prussian blue may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Prussian blue 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.
Prussian blue may cause serious side effects. Call your doctor at once if you have:
severe constipation; or
severe stomach pain.
Prussian blue may cause your stools to appear blue in color. This is a normal side effect of Prussian blue, and should not be cause for alarm.
Common side effects of Prussian blue may include:
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.
Follow all directions on your medicine label and package. Tell each of your healthcare providers about all your medical conditions, allergies, and all medicines you use.
Before taking this medicine
To make sure Prussian blue is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
a digestive disorder;
a blockage in your stomach or intestines;
a heart rhythm disorder; or
an electrolyte imbalance (such as low levels of potassium in your blood).
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Prussian blue will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using Prussian blue.
It is not known whether Prussian blue passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using this medicine.
Exposure to radiation could cause a man to have low sperm counts up to several years later. Talk with your doctor if you have concerns about how radiation may affect your fertility.
How should I take Prussian blue?
Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Prussian blue may work best if you take it with food.
Prussian blue is usually taken 3 times per day for at least 30 days. You may need to take several capsules at one time to get the correct dose.
To make swallowing easier, you may open the Prussian blue capsules and sprinkle the medicine into a spoonful of liquid or bland food. Swallow right away without chewing. Do not save the mixture for later use.
Opening a Prussian blue capsule and mixing the medicine with liquid or food may cause a blue discoloration inside your mouth.
After you are treated with Prussian blue, your urine and stools will contain the radioactive materials that this medicine has helped the body eliminate. Use a toilet rather than a urinal and sit on the toilet while urinating. Flush the toilet 3 times with the lid down after use.
Always wash your hands after using the bathroom. Avoid handling any clean-up of your stools or urine without wearing latex rubber gloves. If another person is handling your stools or urine, they should wear gloves, eye protection, and a mask to cover the nose and mouth.
When cleaning any spills of bodily fluid, use only disposable cleaning cloths that can be flushed down a toilet. Ask your doctor or health department how to dispose of any bodily fluid spills that cannot be flushed down a toilet.
Wash any soiled clothing separately from the laundry of other people in your home.
Although Prussian blue helps the body quickly eliminate a radioactive element, this medicine will not treat any symptoms of radiation exposure. You will be given other medications to treat complications of radiation exposure, such as bone marrow suppression or severe infection.
To be sure this medicine is helping your condition, the radiation levels in your urine and stools will need to be checked often. This will help your doctor determine how long to treat you with Prussian blue.
Store Prussian blue capsules in the dark at room temperature. Do not expose this medicine to light.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
What should I avoid while taking Prussian blue?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
What other drugs will affect Prussian blue?
Other drugs may interact with Prussian blue, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.
Frequently asked questions
More about prussian blue
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- Dosage information
- During pregnancy
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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.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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