Narcan manages opioid overdose.

Narcan Overview


Narcan is a prescription medication used to manage opioid overdose. Narcan is a narcotic antagonist, which works by blocking the effects of opiates in the body.

This medication is available in an injectable form to be given directly into a vein (IV), the muscle (IM), or directly under the skin (SQ).

Common side effects of Narcan include opioid withdrawal (if patient is dependent), low blood pressure and high blood pressure.

Patient Ratings for Narcan

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What are you taking Narcan for?

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  • Other
  • Respiration Disorders
  • Shock, Septic

How long have you been taking it?

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  • Less than a week
  • A couple weeks
  • A month or so
  • A few months
  • A year or so
  • Two years or more

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Uses of Narcan

Narcan is a prescription medication used to treat manage opioid overdose.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Narcan Drug Class

Narcan is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Narcan

Serious side effects have been reported with  Narcan. See the “Narcan Precautions” section.

Common side effects of Narcan include the following:

  • Changes in heart rhythm
  • Shortness of breath
  • Reversal of analgesia
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Fast heart rate
  • Trembling
  • Seizures
  • Pulmonary Edema
  • Cardiac Arrest
  • Paraesthesia
  • Agitation
  • Hallucinations
  • Respiratory Depression
  • Hypoxia
  • Injection Site Reactions
  • Low blood pressure
  • Increased Blood Pressure
  • Hot flushes
  • Flushing

This is not a complete list of Narcan side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.


Narcan Interactions

No Narcan drug interactions have been studied by the manufacturer. However, you should tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Not all drug interactions are known or reported and new drug interactions are continually being reported.

Narcan Food Interactions

Medications can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of Narcan, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving this medication.

Inform MD

Before taking Narcan, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • are allergic to Narcan or to any of its ingredients
  • have or have had a heart condition
  • have heart problems
  • have an addiction or dependance on any substance
  • are pregnant or breastfeeding

Narcan and Pregnancy

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.

Narcan falls into category C. There are no well-controlled studies that have been done in pregnant women. Narcan should be used during pregnancy only if the possible benefit outweighs the possible risk to the unborn baby.

Narcan and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.

It is not known if Narcan crosses into human milk. Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication. Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using Narcan.

Narcan Usage

Narcan is available in an injectable form to be given directly into a vein (IV), muscle (IM), or directly under the skin (SQ). 

Narcan Overdose

If Narcan is administered by a healthcare provider in a medical setting, it is unlikely that an overdose will occur. However, if overdose is suspected, seek emergency medical attention.