Generic name: aminocaproic acid [ a-mee-noe-ka-proe-ik-as-id ]
Drug class: Miscellaneous coagulation modifiers
Availability: Prescription only
Pregnancy & Lactation: Risk data available
Brand names: Amicar
What is Aminocaproic acid?
Aminocaproic acid is a man-made form of a protein that occurs naturally in the body and helps the blood to clot.
Aminocaproic acid is used to treat bleeding episodes in people with certain medical conditions such as aplastic anemia (lack of blood cells and platelets), cirrhosis of the liver, placenta abruptio (early separation of the placenta in pregnancy), urinary bleeding, and certain types of cancer.
Aminocaproic acid is also used to prevent bleeding after heart surgery or placement of a shunt near the liver to control high blood pressure.
Aminocaproic acid may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Stop using aminocaproic acid and call your doctor at once if you have: unexplained muscle pain, sudden numbness or weakness, tingling or cold feeling in an arm or leg, trouble breathing, a sudden cough or sudden chest pain.
How should I take Aminocaproic acid
Your doctor will perform blood tests to make sure you do not have conditions that would prevent you from safely using aminocaproic acid.
Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use aminocaproic acid in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Aminocaproic acid is either taken by mouth or injected into a vein through an IV.
You may be shown how to use an IV at home. Do not give yourself this medicine if you do not understand how to use the injection and properly dispose of needles, IV tubing, and other items used.
You should start using this medicine at the first sign of a bleeding episode. You may need to first use the injection form and then use an oral form (tablet or liquid). Your first dose may be much higher than the doses you use later on. Follow your doctor's dosing instructions very carefully.
Treatment with aminocaproic acid is usually continued hourly for 8 hours or until the bleeding has stopped.
Measure liquid medicine with the dosing syringe provided, or with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
The injectable form of aminocaproic acid must be mixed with a liquid (diluent) before using it. If you are using the injections at home, be sure you understand how to properly mix and store the medicine.
Do not use the injectable medicine if it has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your pharmacist for new medicine.
Use a disposable needle and syringe only once. Follow any state or local laws about throwing away used needles and syringes. Use a puncture-proof "sharps" disposal container (ask your pharmacist where to get one and how to throw it away). Keep this container out of the reach of children and pets.
Call your doctor promptly if your symptoms do not improve after using aminocaproic acid.
While using aminocaproic acid, you may need frequent blood tests. Your kidney function may also need to be checked. Aminocaproic acid can have long-lasting effects on your body. You may need frequent medical tests for a short time after you stop using this medicine.
Store at cool room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not allow the medicine to freeze.
Usual Adult Dose for Fibrinolytic Bleeding:
IV: 4 to 5 g IV infusion during the first hour of treatment, followed by a continuous infusion of 1 g/hr.
Oral: 5 g orally during the first hour of treatment, followed by a continuous rate of 1 g/hr (tablets) or 1.25 g/hr (oral solution).
Duration of therapy: Usually continued for about 8 hours or until bleeding controlled.
Use: To enhance hemostasis when fibrinolysis contributes to bleeding.
You should not use aminocaproic acid if you are allergic to it.
To make sure aminocaproic acid is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:
kidney disease; or
a history of stroke or blood clots.
It is not known whether this medicine will harm an unborn baby. Unless you are being treated for placenta abruptio, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
It is not known whether aminocaproic acid passes into breast milk or if it could affect the nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding.
Aminocaproic acid is not approved for use by anyone younger than 18 years old.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Since aminocaproic acid is used as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are using the medication regularly, use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include urinating less than usual, feeling light-headed, or fainting.
What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. http://www.upandaway.org
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.
What should I avoid while using Aminocaproic acid?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Aminocaproic acid side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Aminocaproic acid may cause serious side effects. Stop using aminocaproic acid and call your doctor at once if you have:
unexplained muscle pain or weakness (especially if you also have fever, unusual tiredness, or dark colored urine);
sudden weakness or ill feeling, fever, chills, sore throat, mouth sores, easy bruising, unusual bleeding;
numbness, tingling, or cold feeling in your arms or legs;
slow heart rate, trouble breathing, feeling like you might pass out;
kidney problems--little or no urination, painful or difficult urination, swelling in your feet or ankles, feeling tired or short of breath; or
signs of a blood clot--sudden numbness or weakness, tingling or cold feeling in an arm or leg, trouble breathing, sudden cough or chest pain, or swelling, warmth, or redness in your arms or legs.
Common side effects of aminocaproic acid may include:
nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, diarrhea;
(in men) decreased amount of semen when having an orgasm;
stuffy nose, watery eyes;
vision problems, ringing in your ears; or
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 more: Aminocaproic acid Side Effects
What other drugs will affect Aminocaproic acid?
Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:
factor IX complex; or
anti-inhibitor coagulant complex (Autoplex, Feiba VH).
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with aminocaproic acid, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain lab tests to check your body's response to aminocaproic acid.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.