Ventavis

Ventavis treats a severe kind of pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). Ventavis can cause dizziness or fainting. Stand up slowly when you get out of a chair or bed.

Ventavis Overview

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Ventavis is a prescription medication used to treat adults with certain kinds of severe pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a condition in which the blood pressure is too high in the blood vessels between the heart and the lungs. 

Ventavis belongs to a group of drugs called vasodilators. It works by helping to relax and widen blood vessels, including those in the lungs.

This medication is available as a solution to inhale by mouth through a nebulizer (a device used to deliver medication in the form of a mist into the lungs) and is usually taken 6 to 9 times a day during waking hours.

Common side effects of Ventavis include flushing, increased cough, and headache.

Ventavis can also cause dizziness and lightheadedness. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how Ventavis affects you.

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Ventavis Cautionary Labels

precautions

Uses of Ventavis

Ventavis is a prescription medication used to treat adults with certain kinds of severe pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), a condition in which the blood pressure is too high in the blood vessels between the heart and the lungs. 

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

Manufacturer

Ventavis Drug Class

Ventavis is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Ventavis

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

Common side effects of Ventavis include the following:
  • flushing
  • increased cough
  • headache
  • tightening of jaw muscles that makes it difficult to open your mouth
  • fainting 
  • trouble sleeping
  • nausea or vomiting
  • low blood pressure
  • back pain
  • tongue pain

This is not a complete list of Ventavis 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.

 

Ventavis Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

  • medications that lower your blood pressure
  • medications to treat heart problems
  • vasodilators such as doxazosin (Cardura), prazosin (Minipress), terazosin (Hytrin), clonidine (Catapres), hydralazine (Bidil, Hydra-Zide), or minoxidil
  • antiplatelets (a type of blood thinner)  such as clopidogrel (Plavix), aspirin, prasugrel (Effient), ticagrelor (Brilinta), ticlopidine (Ticlid), abciximab (ReoPro), eptifibatide (Integrilin), tirofiban (Aggrastat), and cilostazol (Pletal)
  • anticoagulant (blood thinner) medications such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven), heparin, enoxaparin (Lovenox), fondaparinux (Arixtra), rivaroxaban (Xarelto), and apixaban (Eliquis)

This is not a complete list of Ventavis drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

 

Ventavis Precautions

Serious side effects have been reported with Ventavis including the following:

Risk of Fainting. Ventavis can cause dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting. Your doctor should monitor your blood pressure and heart rate while taking Ventavis. To help avoid this, get up slowly if you are lying down or in bed. Tell your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms while taking Ventavis. Do not drive a car or operate any tools or machines if dizziness or fainting from low blood pressure is a problem for you.

High pressure in the pulmonary veins: If you develop any of the following signs and symptoms, stop use and tell your doctor immediately. 

  • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing that worsens when lying down
  • wheezing or gasping for breath
  • coughing up pink, frothy mucus
  • chest pain

Bronchospasm. Ventavis can cause the muscles around your airway to tighten and make it difficult to breathe. Seek emergency help if you have trouble breathing.

Do not take Ventavis if you are allergic to Ventavis or to any of its ingredients.

Ventavis 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 Ventavis, there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when receiving this medication.

Inform MD

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

  • are allergic to Ventavis or to any of its ingredients
  • have liver problems
  • have kidney problems
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Ventavis and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

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.

Ventavis falls into category C. In animal studies, pregnant animals were given this medication and had some babies were harmed. There are no well-controlled studies that have been done in pregnant women. Ventavis should be used during pregnancy only if the possible benefit outweighs the possible risk to the unborn baby.

Ventavis and Lactation

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

It is not known if Ventavis 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 Ventavis.

Ventavis Usage

Use Ventavis exactly as prescribed. Your doctor may change your dose if needed. 

Ventavis comes in solution form to be inhaled by mouth through a nebulizer 6 to 9 times per day (no more than once every 2 hours) during waking hours. The effects of Ventavis may not last for 2 hours; you may need to plan your activities around when you take your doses.

Do not drink Ventavis or allow the solution to come into contact with your skin or eyes. If it does, rinse your skin or eyes with water immediately.

Follow your healthcare provider's instructions on how to properly open and dispose of Ventavis ampules. 

Do not allow other people to be exposed to Ventavis while you are breathing it, especially babies and pregnant women.

If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take your next dose at the regular time. Do not take two doses of Ventavis at the same time.

Ventavis Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The dose your doctor recommends may be based on the following:

  • how you tolerate this medication.
  • if you have liver problems

The recommended starting dose of Ventavis is 2.5 mcg. If this dose is well-tolerated, further doses are increased to 5.0 mcg per dose. Ventavis is typically taken 6 to 9 times per day (no more than once every 2 hours) during waking hours.

The amount of doses of Ventavis you will need to take per day will be determined by your individual need and how you tolerate this medication.

 

Ventavis Overdose

If you take too much Ventavis, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away. If you take too much Ventavis, you may have a headache, red face, dizziness, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. If this happens stop taking Ventavis.

If Ventavis 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.

Other Requirements

  • Store Ventavis at between 68°F to 77°F (20°C to 25°C).
  • Keep this and all medicines out of the reach of children.