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Enoxaparin  

 

I am taking ________ mg of enoxaparin ________ a day.

 

ENOXAPARIN (ee nox a PA rin) is used to prevent blood clotting after knee, hip, or abdominal surgeries. It may also be used to treat existing blood clots in the lungs or in the veins.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

 

Enoxaparin is known as an anticoagulant, which is a drug that lengthens the time it takes for your blood to clot.  This makes it harder for clots to form in your blood vessels and heart, and keeps existing clots from getting larger.  If you are going to be taking enoxaparin, there are some important facts you need to know about this medication.

 

Important facts to remember…... 

  • Take the exact amount prescribed at the same time each day.  If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember.  DO NOT give yourself an “extra” injection. 

  • Make sure to keep all appointments for blood related laboratory tests as your doctor needs to check them to see if the medication is working for you and to check for side effects.  

  • Remember to tell your surgeon or dentist that you are taking enoxaparin.  You may need to stop taking it ahead of time if you need to have dental work or a surgical procedure.  The effects of enoxaparin last for 2 – 3 days. 

  • This medication is given as an injection under the skin.  Your doctor or healthcare provider will either give you the injection or show you how to inject the medication.  Make sure you fully understand how to inject the medication under the skin and NOT into a muscle before you take enoxaparin home.

 

 Call you doctor or healthcare provider immediately if you…

 

  • Have any bleeding or bruising that is not normal.  Tell your doctor or healthcare provider if you have any of the following: dark, tarry or bloody stools; red or rust-colored urine; nose bleeds; easy bruising, unusual weakness; bruising or bleeding at an incision site following surgery or surgical procedure. 

  • Develop: hives, swelling of your tongue or face, chest pain, and trouble breathing.  These are serious side effects of enoxaparin that may require immediate attention.  

  • Have any severe abdominal pain, severe chest pain or shortness of breath, headache, eye problems (blurred vision/loss of vision), severe leg pain (calf or thigh).  These may be a sign of a blood clot. 

  • Start any new medications, including over-the-counter (OTC) products and dietary supplements such as   warfarin (Coumadin®), clopidogrel (Plavix®), ticlodipine (Ticlid®), cilostazol (Pletal®), dipyridamole (Persantine®), pain relievers such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®), naproxen (Aleve®, Naprosyn®),  indomethacin (Indocin®), and fish oils.  These drugs increase your risk of bleeding when taken together with enoxaparin.  

  • Are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.   

 

Commonly asked questions 

  

What is this medicine used for? 

Clots may form in blood vessels of the legs and then travel to the lungs where they can become stuck and cause harm. Enoxaparin has been prescribed for you because you have a condition or conditions that increase your chance of forming blood clots.  These conditions may include:

  • Recent surgery, especially hip fracture, hip or knee replacement, and abdominal surgery

  • Current or previous clot in the leg or lung

  • Cancer or major illness requiring hospitalization

  • Recent heart attack

  • Irregular heart beat

  • Artificial heart valve

 

What may interact with this medication?

Do not take enoxaparin with any of the following medications:

  • aspirin and aspirin-like medicines

  • heparin

  • mifepristone

  • warfarin

  

 Enoxaparin may also interact with the following medications:

  • cilostazol

  • clopidogrel

  • dipyridamole

  • NSAIDs, medicines for pain and inflammation, like ibuprofen or naproxen

  • sulfinpyrazone

  • ticlopidine

 

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use.

  

What side effects may occur?  

The most serious side effect of enoxaparin is bleeding. If you experience any of the side effects listed below you should report to your doctor or health care professional immediately.  

  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue

  • bleeding, that takes a long time to stop, from a minor injury such as a cut; bleeding from your gums or nose

  • unusual or unexplained bruising  

  • red or rust-colored urine

  • black, tarry stools

  • breathing problems

  • chest pain

  • dark urine

  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls

  • shortness of breath

  • unusual bruising or bleeding

  • fever

  • heavy menstrual bleeding

 

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

 

How can I lower my risk of bleeding?  

Since it takes longer for your blood to clot when you are taking enoxaparin, you will need to take some steps to avoid injury:

  • Shave with an electric razor instead of a blade

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and floss gently with waxed floss

  • Don’t walk barefoot and don’t trim foot corns or foot calluses yourself

  • Don’t take part in activities that have a high risk of injury, such as skiing, football, or other contact sports 

 

If you have additional questions, arrangements can be made for a pharmacist to meet with you.

 

Information is provided as a service of University Medical Center at Princeton’s

 Department of Pharmacy Services

 

References

-          Sanofi Aventis. LovenoxÒ package insert. Bridgewater, NJ 2009.

-          Micromedex® Healthcare Series [Internet database]. Greenwood Village, Colo: Thomson Healthcare. Updated periodically.  Available at: http://www.micromedex.com (Accessed on July 30, 2010).

 

 

3rd edition, July 2010                                                                                                                  Edited by Danielle Candelario, Pharm.D.

 

The health information provided in this publication is for general education purposes and is not intended to constitute medical advice.  The information should not be used for diagnosis or treatment, nor should it be used to replace the advice of licensed healthcare professionals.  Health concerns or questions should be discussed with your physician.  If you have any concerns about your health, please contact your healthcare provider.