Generic Name: somatropin (soe ma TROE pin)
Brand Name: Genotropin, Genotropin Miniquick, Humatrope, Norditropin FlexPro Pen, Norditropin Nordiflex Pen, Nutropin AQ NuSpin 10, Nutropin AQ Pen 10 Cartridge, Omnitrope, Saizen, Serostim, Zomacton, Zorbtive
What is Serostim (somatropin)?
Somatropin is a form of human growth hormone important for the growth of bones and muscles.
Somatropin is used to treat growth failure in children and adults who lack natural growth hormone. This includes people with with chronic kidney failure, Noonan syndrome, Turner syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, short stature at birth with no catch-up growth, and other causes. Somatropin is also used to prevent severe weight loss in people with AIDS, or to treat short bowel syndrome.
Somatropin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
What is the most important information I should know about Serostim (somatropin)?
You should not use somatropin if you have cancer, eye problems caused by diabetes, or if you are being treated for Prader-Willi syndrome and you are overweight or have severe breathing problems. You should not use somatropin if you have a serious illness due to lung failure or complications from recent surgery, injury, or medical trauma.
What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using Serostim (somatropin)?
You should not use somatropin if you are allergic to it, or if you have:
a serious illness due to lung failure or complications from recent surgery, injury, or medical trauma;
eye problems caused by diabetes (diabetic retinopathy); or
if you are being treated for Prader-Willi syndrome and you are overweight or have severe breathing problems (including sleep apnea).
To make sure somatropin is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
a pituitary gland disorder;
abnormal curvature of the spine (scoliosis);
history of head injury or brain tumor; or
a history of childhood brain cancer and radiation treatment.
Some brands of somatropin are not expected to harm an unborn baby, including Genotropin, Omnitrope, Saizen, Serostim, and Zorbtive.
It is not known whether certain other brands of somatropin will harm an unborn baby, including Humatrope, Norditropin, Nutropin, and Tev-tropin.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
It is not known whether somatropin passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
How should I use Serostim (somatropin)?
Your dose and brand of somatropin, and how often you give it will depend on what you are being treated for. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Somatropin is injected into a muscle or under the skin. You may be shown how to use injections at home. Do not self-inject this medicine if you do not understand how to give the injection and properly dispose of used needles and syringes.
Your care provider will show you the best places on your body to inject somatropin. Use a different place each time you give an injection. Do not inject into the same place two times in a row.
Do not shake the medication bottle or you may ruin the medicine. Prepare your dose only when you are ready to give an injection. Do not use if the medicine has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your pharmacist for new medicine.
Use a disposable needle and syringe only once. Follow any state or local laws about throwing away used needles and syringes. Use a puncture-proof "sharps" disposal container (ask your pharmacist where to get one and how to throw it away). Keep this container out of the reach of children and pets.
While using somatropin, you may need frequent blood tests. Your growth progress will need to be tested often. Your eyes may also need to be checked.
If you are being treated for short bowel syndrome, follow the diet plan created for you by your doctor or nutrition counselor to help control your condition. Somatropin is not a cure for short bowel syndrome.
If you have Prader-Willi syndrome, your treatment program may also include weight control. Follow your doctor's instructions very closely.
If you use a form of somatropin that comes in a cartridge for use with an injection pen, use only the pen injection system provided with the somatropin brand you use.
How you store this medicine will depend on what brand you are using and what diluent you are mixing somatropin with. After mixing somatropin, you may need to use it right away or you may be able to store it for later use. Read and carefully follow the instructions provided with your medicine about proper storage of somatropin before and after it has been mixed. Ask your pharmacist if you have any questions about proper storage of your medication.
Throw away any somatropin left over after the expiration date on the label has passed.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Call your doctor if you miss more than 3 doses in a row.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose can cause tremors or shaking, cold sweats, increased hunger, headache, drowsiness, weakness, dizziness, fast heartbeat, and nausea. Long-term overdose may cause excessive growth.
What should I avoid while using Serostim (somatropin)?
If you use Zorbtive to treat short bowel syndrome, avoid drinking fruit juices or soda beverages. Follow the instructions of your doctor or nutrition counselor about what types of liquids you should drink while using Zorbtive.
Avoid drinking alcohol if you have short bowel syndrome. Alcohol can irritate your stomach and could make your condition worse.
Serostim (somatropin) side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Serious breathing problems may occur in patients with Prader-Willi syndrome who use somatropin. If you have Prader-Willi syndrome, call your doctor promptly if you develop signs of lung or breathing problems such as shortness of breath, coughing, or new or increased snoring.
Also call your doctor at once if you have:
vision changes with sudden and severe pain behind your eyes and nausea or vomiting;
pain in your knees or hips, or walking with a limp;
ear pain, swelling, warmth, or drainage;
numbness or tingling in your wrist, hand, or fingers;
severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back, nausea and vomiting, fast heart rate; or
high blood sugar--increased thirst, increased urination, hunger, dry mouth, fruity breath odor, drowsiness, dry skin, blurred vision, weight loss.
Common side effects may include:
swelling, rapid weight gain;
muscle or joint pain;
pain, itching, or skin changes where the medicine was injected.
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.
See also: Side effects (in more detail)
What other drugs will affect Serostim (somatropin)?
Tell your doctor about all medicines you use, and those you start or stop using during your treatment with somatropin, especially:
birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy
insulin or oral diabetes medicine; or
steroid medicine (prednisone, dexamethasone, methylprednisolone, and others).
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with somatropin, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.
More about Serostim (somatropin)
Related treatment guides
Where can I get more information?
- Your pharmacist can provide more information about somatropin.
- 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.
- Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 13.02.
Date modified: October 14, 2016
Last reviewed: July 29, 2016