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Hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylaxis and bronchospasm, have been reported in patients who have exhibited hypersensitivity to other selective 5-HT3 receptor antagonists.
Ondansetron prolongs the QT interval in a dose-dependent manner [see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY]. In addition, post-marketing cases of Torsade de Pointes have been reported in patients using ondansetron. Avoid ZOFRAN in patients with congenital long QT syndrome. ECG monitoring is recommended in patients with electrolyte abnormalities (e.g., hypokalemia or hypomagnesemia), congestive heart failure, bradyarrhythmias, or patients taking other medicinal products that lead to QT prolongation.
Masking of Progressive Ileus and Gastric Distension
The use of ZOFRAN in patients following abdominal surgery or in patients with chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting may mask a progressive ileus and gastric distention.
Effect on Peristalsis
ZOFRAN is not a drug that stimulates gastric or intestinal peristalsis. It should not be used instead of nasogastric suction.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment of Fertility
Carcinogenic effects were not seen in 2-year studies in rats and mice with oral ondansetron doses up to 10 and 30 mg/kg per day, respectively (approximately 3.6 and 5.4 times the recommended human intravenous dose of 0.15 mg/kg given three times a day, based on body surface area). Ondansetron was not mutagenic in standard tests for mutagenicity.
Oral administration of ondansetron up to 15 mg/kg per day (approximately 3.8 times the recommended human intravenous dose, based on body surface area) did not affect fertility or general reproductive performance of male and female rats.
Use In Specific Populations
Pregnancy Category B
Reproduction studies have been performed in pregnant rats and rabbits at intravenous doses up to 4 mg/kg per day (approximately 1.4 and 2.9 times the recommended human intravenous dose of 0.15 mg/kg given three times a day, respectively, based on body surface area) and have revealed no evidence of impaired fertility or harm to the fetus due to ondansetron. There are, however, no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Because animal reproduction studies are not always predictive of human response, this drug should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed.
Ondansetron is excreted in the breast milk of rats. It is not known whether ondansetron is excreted in human milk. Because many drugs are excreted in human milk, caution should be exercised when ondansetron is administered to a nursing woman.
Little information is available about the use of ondansetron in pediatric surgical patients younger than 1 month of age. [See Clinical Studies]. Little information is available about the use of ondansetron in pediatric cancer patients younger than 6 months of age. [See Clinical Studies and DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].
The clearance of ondansetron in pediatric patients 1 month to 4 months of age is slower and the half-life is ~2.5 fold longer than patients who are > 4 to 24 months of age. As a precaution, it is recommended that patients less than 4 months of age receiving this drug be closely monitored. [See CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
Of the total number of subjects enrolled in cancer chemotherapy-induced and postoperative nausea and vomiting in US- and foreign-controlled clinical trials, 862 were 65 years of age and over. No overall differences in safety or effectiveness were observed between these subjects and younger subjects, and other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between the elderly and younger patients, but greater sensitivity of some older individuals cannot be ruled out. Dosage adjustment is not needed in patients over the age of 65 [see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
In patients with severe hepatic impairment (Child-Pugh score of 10 or greater), clearance is reduced and apparent volume of distribution is increased with a resultant increase in plasma half-life [see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY]. In such patients, a total daily dose of 8 mg should not be exceeded [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].
Although plasma clearance is reduced in patients with severe renal impairment (creatinine clearance < 30 mL/min), no dosage adjustment is recommended [see CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY].
Last reviewed on RxList: 11/28/2012
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
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