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Prepidil Side Effects

Generic Name: dinoprostone topical

Note: This page contains side effects data for the generic drug dinoprostone topical. It is possible that some of the dosage forms included below may not apply to the brand name Prepidil.

For the Consumer

Applies to dinoprostone topical: vaginal gel/jelly, vaginal insert extended release, vaginal suppository, vaginal tampon

As well as its needed effects, dinoprostone topical (the active ingredient contained in Prepidil) may cause unwanted side effects that require medical attention.

Major Side Effects

If any of the following side effects occur while taking dinoprostone topical, check with your doctor immediately:

Less common or rare:
  • Fast or slow heartbeat
  • hives
  • increased pain of the uterus
  • pale, cool, blotchy skin on arms or legs
  • pressing or painful feeling in chest
  • shortness of breath
  • swelling of face, inside the nose, and eyelids
  • tightness in chest
  • trouble in breathing
  • weak or absent pulse in arms or legs
  • wheezing

Minor Side Effects

Some dinoprostone topical side effects may not need any medical attention. As your body gets used to the medicine these side effects may disappear. Your health care professional may be able to help you prevent or reduce these side effects, but do check with them if any of the following side effects continue, or if you are concerned about them:

More common:
  • Abdominal or stomach cramps
  • diarrhea
  • fever
  • nausea
  • vomiting
Less common or rare:
  • Chills or shivering
  • constipation
  • flushing
  • headache
  • swelling of the genital area (vulva)
  • tender or mildly bloated abdomen or stomach

This procedure may still result in some effects, which occur after the procedure is completed, that need medical attention. Check with your doctor if any of the following side effects occur while taking dinoprostone topical:

  • Chills or shivering (continuing)
  • fever (continuing)
  • foul-smelling vaginal discharge
  • pain in lower abdomen
  • unusual increase in bleeding of the uterus

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to dinoprostone topical: vaginal gel, vaginal insert, vaginal suppository


Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain[Ref]


Very common (10% or more): Any fetal heart rate abnormality
Frequency not reported: Hearing impairment, neonatal distress, neonatal death, stillbirths, low Apgar score[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Hypotension, bradycardia
Frequency not reported: Flushing or hot flashes, chest pain, cardiac arrhythmia[Ref]

Nervous system

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Fever
Frequency not reported: Headache, dizziness, weakness, tremor, paresthesia[Ref]


Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Postpartum disseminated intravascular coagulation
Frequency not reported: Elevated WBC[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Dehydration[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Back pain, joint inflammation or pain new or exacerbated, muscle cramp or pain, nocturnal leg cramps[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Dyspnea, coughing, pharyngitis, laryngitis, wheezing, tightness in chest, pharyngitis, laryngitis[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Rash, diaphoresis, skin discoloration[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Blurred vision, eye pain[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Anaphylactic reactions (including anaphylactic shock)[Ref]


Common (1% to 10%): Uterine hyperstimulation (with or without fetal distress), fetal distress without uterine hyperstimulation, warm feeling in vagina
Frequency not reported: Uterine hypertonus, uterine rupture, placenta abruptio, rapid cervical dilatation, vaginal pain, vaginal irritation, vaginitis or vulvitis, breast tenderness, vaginismus, genital edema, transient vasovagal symptoms (flushing, shivering, headache, dizziness)[Ref]


Frequency not reported: Tension[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Cervidil (dinoprostone topical)." Forest Pharmaceuticals, St. Louis, MO.

2. "Product Information. Prostin E2 Suppository (dinoprostone topical)." Pharmacia and Upjohn, Kalamazoo, MI.

3. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

4. "Product Information. Prepidil (dinoprostone topical)" Pharmacia and Upjohn, Kalamazoo, MI.

5. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

It is possible that some side effects of Prepidil may not have been reported. These can be reported to the FDA here. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. 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 substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.