dexamethasone sodium phosphate
Consumer Medicine Information
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS. It does not
contain all the available information. It does not take the place of talking to your
doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have risks and benefits. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you being
given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS against the benefits they expect it will have for you.
If you have any concerns about taking this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Keep this leaflet with the medicine.
You may need to read it again.
What DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is used for
DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is a glucocorticoid and belongs to a group of medicines called
It may be used to treat an inactive or underactive adrenal gland or to treat a number
of different diseases such as certain immune disorders, skin problems, asthma or arthritis.
Corticosteroids reduce inflammation, one of the body's reactions to injury. Except
for its use in the treatment of an underactive adrenal gland, DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS
does not cure disease; it treats the symptoms.
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why this medicine has been prescribed
Your doctor may have prescribed it for another reason.
This medicine is not addictive.
Before you are given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS
When you must not be given it
You should not be given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS if you have an allergy to:
any medicine containing dexamethasone sodium phosphate
any of the ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet
Some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:
shortness of breath
wheezing or difficulty breathing
swelling of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body
rash, itching or hives on the skin
You should not be given this medicine if you have:
an internal fungal infection or any other infection
recently been given a live vaccine unless you are being given this medicine for replacement
myasthenia gravis, a muscle wasting disease
a stomach (peptic) ulcer
osteoporosis (weak or brittle bones)
have a severe mental health condition
You must not be given this medicine after the expiry date printed on the pack or if
the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering.
If you are not sure whether you should be given this medicine, talk to your doctor.
Before you start to take it
Tell your doctor if you have allergies to any other medicines, foods, preservatives
Tell your doctor if you have or have had any of the following medical conditions:
diabetes, a condition in which the level of sugar in the blood is too high
any current or recent infections
heart failure or a recent heart attack
inflammation of the bowel wall or other bowel problems
high blood pressure
eye diseases, including infections, ulcers or allergies
muscle disease or injury
epilepsy, seizures or convulsions, migraine
Cushing's disease, a condition where there is too much cortisol
a stomach ulcer
osteoporosis (weak or brittle bones)
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant or are breast-feeding.
Like most corticosteroid medicines, dexamethasone is not generally recommended for
use during pregnancy.
The active ingredient in DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS may pass into breast milk and there
is a possibility that your baby may be affected. Therefore, this medicine is not recommended
for use when breast feeding.
Your doctor can discuss with you the risks and benefits involved.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have received any vaccinations recently.
If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell them before you are
given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS.
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor or nurse if you are taking any other medicines, including any that
you get without a prescription from your pharmacy, supermarket or health food shop.
Some medicines and DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS may interfere with each other. These include:
barbiturates, carbamazepine or phenytoin, medicines used to treat epilepsy
aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines, especially phenylbutazone
insulin or other medicines for the control of blood sugar
estrogens and other oral contraceptives
anti-thyroid medicines used to treat an over active thyroid gland
fluid tablets (known as diuretics), particularly furosemide (frusemide) and thiazides
or other medicines affecting the kidneys
anticoagulant medicines (medicines to prevent blood clots), such as warfarin or heparin
any recent vaccinations or immunisations
ciclosporin, a medicine used to prevent transplant rejection
rifabutin, rifampicin, amphotericin or vancomycin, medicines used to treat infections
ritonavir, a medicine used in the treatment of HIV/AIDS
ketoconazole, a medicine used to treat fungal infections
digoxin, a medicine used to treat heart conditions
aminoglutethimide, a hormone used to treat breast cancer
daunorubicin or doxorubicin, a medicine used to treat cancer
salbutamol, salmeterol, medicines used to treat asthma
some medicines used in the treatment of heartburn and indigestion
doxapram, a medicine used to treat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
glycopyrrolate, a medicine used to dry up secretions or saliva.
These medicines may be affected by DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS or may affect how well it
works. You may need different amounts of your medicines, or you may need to take different
Your doctor and nurse have more information on medicines to be careful with or avoid
while taking this medicine.
How DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is given
DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is an injection which is given to you by a doctor or nurse.
How much is given
The dose of DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is variable, depending on the condition being treated.
It may be given as a course of injections or as a single dose.
Your doctor will determine the dose you will receive.
The dose depends on your condition and other factors, such as your weight.
As soon as an improvement in your condition is noticed, the dosage should be adjusted
to the minimum required to control your symptoms.
How it is given
DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is given as a slow injection or infusion (intravenous drip)
into the veins. It may also be given as an injection into an injured muscle or joint.
When it is given
As your doctor will give you the injection they will determine when it is given to
How long to take it
Your doctor will determine how long you will take this medicine for.
If you are given too much (overdose)
As DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS will most likely be given to you in hospital under the supervision
of your doctor it is very unlikely that you will receive too much.
However, if you experience severe side effects tell your doctor or nurse immediately,
or if you are not already in hospital go to Accident and Emergency at the nearest
hospital or immediately contact the Poisons Information Centre for advice on overdose
(Call 13 11 26).
Symptoms of an overdose may include some of the side effects listed below including
swelling of the limbs, sore stomach or altered mental state.
You may need urgent medical attention.
While you are receiving DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS
Things you must do
If you are about to be started on any new medicine, remind your doctor and pharmacist
that you are being given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS.
Tell any other doctors, dentists and pharmacists who treat you that you are being
given this medicine.
If you are going to have surgery, tell the surgeon or anaesthetist that you are being
given this medicine.
It may affect other medicines used during surgery.
If you become pregnant while you are being given this medicine, tell your doctor immediately.
Tell your doctor immediately if you get an infection whilst you are being given this
Like most corticosteroid medicine, dexamethasone may hide the symptoms of an infection.
Things to be careful of
Be careful driving or operating machinery until you know how DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS
has affected you.
As with other corticosteroid medicines, dexamethasone may cause dizziness and blurred
vision in some people.
If you have any of these symptoms, do not drive, operate machinery or do anything
else that could be dangerous.
If you drink alcohol, dizziness may be worse.
If you have been given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS for a painful or inflamed joint, you
should be careful not to overuse the joint if the inflammation is still present.
Tell your doctor or nurse as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you are
being given DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS.
This medicine helps most people with immune disorders or inflammation, but it may
have unwanted side effects in a few people. All medicines can have side effects. Sometimes
they are serious, most of the time they are not. You may need medical attention if
you get some of the side effects.
If you are over 65 years of age you may have an increased chance of getting side effects.
If you only receive one or two doses of this medicine, side effects are rarer.
Do not be alarmed by the following lists of side effects. You may not experience any
Ask your doctor or nurse to answer any questions you may have.
Tell your doctor or nurse if you notice any of the following and they worry you:
nausea and vomiting
'gas' or abdominal bloating
bad taste in the mouth
increased body hair
wounds that take a long time to heal
thin, fragile skin
reduced growth in children
Tell your doctor or nurse immediately if you notice any of the following:
signs of an allergic reaction such as a rash, itching or hives on the skin, swelling
of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body, shortness of breath, wheezing
or difficulty breathing
severe stomach pain
blood in the faeces
changes in vision
changes in mood or sleep patterns
joint pain or broken
seizures or convulsions
signs of infection
The above list includes serious side effects that may require medical attention. Serious
side effects are rare.
Tell your doctor or nurse if you notice anything that is making you feel unwell.
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some people.
What it looks like
DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS is a clear, colourless solution, free from visible particulate
matter and packaged in a 2 mL amber vial with rubber stopper and aluminium seal.
This medicine is available in packs of 5 vials.
This medicine will usually be stored in the hospital pharmacy or on the ward.
The medicine should be kept in a cool, dry place protected from light where the temperature
stays below 25°C.
DEXAMETHASONE VIATRIS vials contain either 4 mg or 8 mg of dexamethasone phosphate
(as sodium) as the active ingredient.
The vials also contain the following inactive ingredients:
water for injections
Alphapharm Pty Ltd trading as Viatris
Level 1, 30 The Bond
30-34 Hickson Road
Millers Point NSW 2000
Phone: 1800 274 276
Australian Registration Number:
AUST R 163200 - 4 mg/1 mL
AUST R 163199 - 8 mg/2 mL
This leaflet was prepared in March 2022.
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