Skip to Content

Narcan Nasal Spray

Generic Name: naloxone (nasal) (na LOX one)
Brand Names: Narcan

What is Narcan?

Narcan Nasal Spray contains naloxone hydrochloride. Naloxone blocks or reverses the effects of opioid medication, including extreme drowsiness, slowed breathing, or loss of consciousness. An opioid is sometimes called a narcotic.

Narcan Nasal Spray is used to treat an opioid overdose in an emergency situation. This medicine should not be used in place of emergency medical care for an overdose.

Narcan Nasal Spray is also used to help diagnose whether a person has used an overdose of an opioid.

Important information

In an emergency situation it may not be possible before you are treated to tell your caregivers about your health conditions or if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Make sure any doctor caring for you afterward knows that you have received this medication.

Before taking this medicine

You should not be treated with Narcan Nasal Spray if you are allergic to naloxone.

To make sure Narcan Nasal Spray is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • heart disease.

It is not known whether Narcan Nasal Spray will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether naloxone nasal passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

In an emergency situation it may not be possible to tell your caregivers if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Make sure any doctor caring for your pregnancy or your baby knows that you have received Narcan Nasal Spray.

How should I use Narcan?

Take Narcan Nasal Spray exactly as prescribed, Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

This Narcan Nasal Spray be given by a healthcare provider, emergency medical provider, or a family member or caregiver who is trained to properly give Narcan.

Narcan Nasal Spray should be sprayed into the nose while the person is lying on his or her back.

If you are a caregiver or family member giving Narcan Nasal Spray to another person, read all instructions when you first get this medicine. Read all caregiver information, medication guides, and instruction sheets provided with this medicine. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Be sure you know how to recognize the signs of an opioid overdose in the person you are caring for. Overdose symptoms may include:

  • slowed breathing, or no breathing;

  • very small or pinpoint pupils in the eyes;

  • slow heartbeats; or

  • extreme drowsiness, especially if you are unable to wake the person from sleep.

Even if you are not sure an opioid overdose has occurred, if the person is not breathing or is unresponsive, give Narcan Nasal Spray right away and then seek emergency medical care.

Do not assume that an overdose episode has ended if symptoms improve. You must get emergency help after giving Narcan Nasal Spray. You may need to perform CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) on the person while you are waiting for emergency help to arrive.

After giving this medicine, stay with the person and watch for continued signs of overdose. You may need to give another dose every 2 to 3 minutes until emergency help arrives. Follow all medication instructions carefully.

Each single-use Narcan spray pump contains enough naloxone for one use only. Throw away after one use, even if there is still some medicine left in the pump after using a dose.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep each spray pump in the box until you are ready to give a dose. Do not use Narcan Nasal Spray if the expiration date on the label has passed.

Narcan Nasal Spray dosing information

Usual Adult Dose of Narcan Nasal Spray for Opioid Overdose:

Nasal Spray:
-Administer 1 spray intranasally into 1 nostril
-If desired response is not achieved after 2 or 3 minutes, give a second dose intranasally into alternate nostril; additional doses may be administered every 2 to 3 minutes in alternating nostrils until emergency medical assistance arrives

Comments:
-IV route is recommended in emergency situations since it has the most rapid onset of action.
-The duration of action of some opioids exceed that of this drug, therefore, repeat doses may be needed; the need for repeat doses will depend on the amount, type, and route of administration of the opioid being antagonized.
-Patients should remain under continued surveillance; if a patients responds and relapses back into respiratory depression, additional doses should be given.
-Additional supportive and/or resuscitative measures may be helpful while awaiting emergency medical assistance.

Usual Adult Dose of Narcan Nasal Spray for Reversal of Opioid Sedation:

Nasal Spray:
-Administer 1 spray intranasally into 1 nostril
-If desired response is not achieved after 2 or 3 minutes, give a second dose intranasally into alternate nostril; additional doses may be administered every 2 to 3 minutes in alternating nostrils until emergency medical assistance arrives

Comments:
- To avoid precipitating opioid withdrawal symptoms, consider use of a naloxone product that can be dosed according to weight and titrated to effect.
-The duration of action of some opioids will exceed that of this drug, therefore, repeat doses may be needed; the need for repeat doses will depend on the amount, type, and route of administration of the opioid being antagonized.
-Patients should remain under continued surveillance; if a patients responds and relapses back into respiratory depression, additional doses should be given.
-Additional supportive and/or resuscitative measures may be helpful while awaiting emergency medical assistance.

See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)

What happens if I miss a dose?

Because you will receive Narcan Nasal Spray in an emergency situation, you are not likely to miss a dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Since each spray pump contains only enough naloxone for one dose, an overdose is unlikely to occur.

What should I avoid while taking Narcan?

Avoid leaving a person alone after giving him or her a dose of Narcan Nasal Spray. An overdose can impair a person's thinking or reactions.

Narcan side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Narcan: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Because Narcan reverses opioid effects, this medicine may cause sudden withdrawal symptoms such as:

  • nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain;

  • fever, sweating, body aches, weakness;

  • tremors or shivering, fast heart rate, pounding heartbeats, increased blood pressure;

  • feeling nervous, restless, or irritable;

  • goosebumps, shivering;

  • runny nose, yawning; or

  • (in babies younger than 4 weeks old) seizures, crying, stiffness, overactive reflexes.

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 Narcan?

Other drugs may interact with naloxone nasal, 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.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about Narcan Nasal Spray.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this Narcan Nasal Spray 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 1996-2016 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 1.01. Revision Date: 2016-03-18, 2:38:15 PM.

Hide