Aminocaproic Acid : Uses, Side Effects, Interactions & More
Why is this medication prescribed?
Aminocaproic acid is used to control bleeding that occurs when blood clots break down too quickly. This type of bleeding can occur during or after heart or liver surgery; in people who have certain bleeding disorders; in people who have cancer of the prostate (male reproductive gland), lung, stomach, or cervix (opening of the uterus); and in pregnant women who experience placental abruption (the placenta separates from the uterus before the baby is ready to be born). Aminocaproic acid is also used to control bleeding in the urinary tract (the organs of the body that make and excrete urine) that can occur after prostate or kidney surgery or in people who have certain types of cancer. Aminocaproic acid should not be used to treat bleeding that is not caused by the clot breaking down faster than normal, so your doctor may order tests to find the cause of your bleeding before starting your treatment. Aminocaproic acid belongs to a class of medications called hemostats. It works by slowing the breakdown of blood clots.
How should this medicine be used?
Aminocaproic acid comes as a tablet and a solution (liquid) to take by mouth. It is usually taken once an hour for about 8 hours or until the bleeding is controlled. When aminocaproic acid is used to treat continuous bleeding, it is usually taken every 3 to 6 hours. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any parts you do not understand. Take aminocaproic acid exactly as directed. Do not take more or less, or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Shake the liquid well before each use to mix the medicine evenly.
Your doctor may start with a high dose of aminocaproic acid and gradually decrease your dose as the bleeding is controlled.
Other uses for this medicine
Aminocaproic acid is also sometimes used to treat bleeding in the eye caused by injury. Talk to your doctor about the risks of using this drug for your condition.
This medicine may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking aminocaproic acid,
- Tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to aminocaproic acid or any other medications.
- Tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following medications: factor IX (AlphaNine SD, Mononine); factor IX complex (Bebulin VH, Profilnine SD, Proplex T); and anti-inhibitor coagulant complex (Feiba VH). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you closely for side effects.
- Tell your doctor if you have or have ever had blood clots or kidney, heart, or liver disease.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. If you become pregnant while taking aminocaproic acid, call your doctor.
- If you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking aminocaproic acid.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Unless your doctor tells you otherwise, continue your normal diet.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for the one you forgot.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Aminocaproic acid may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- stomach pain or cramping
- hallucinations (seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist)
- swelling of the arms, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- decreased or blurred vision
- ringing in the ears
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
- muscle weakness
- shortness of breath
- chest pressure or squeezing pain in chest
- discomfort in arms, shoulders, neck or upper back
- excessive sweating
- feeling of heaviness, pain, warmth and/or swelling in a leg or in the pelvis
- sudden tingling or coldness in an arm or leg
- sudden slow or difficult speech
- sudden drowsiness or need to sleep
- sudden weakness or numbness of an arm or leg
- fast breathing
- sharp pain when taking a deep breath
- fast or slow heartbeat
- coughing up blood
- rust colored urine
- decreased amount of urine
Aminocaproic acid can cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medicine.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor can submit a report online to the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?
Keep this medicine in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of the reach of children. Store at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medicine that is out of date or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the correct way to dispose of your medicine.
It is important to keep all medicines out of the sight and reach of children, since many containers (such as those containing weekly pills and those for eye drops, creams, patches and inhalers) are not resistant to children and small children can easily open them. To protect young children from poisoning, always close the safety caps and immediately place the medicine in a safe place, one that is upright and out of their sight and reach. http://www.upandaway.org
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at https://www.poisonhelp.org/help. If the victim collapsed, had a seizure, is having trouble breathing, or is unable to wake up, immediately call 911 for emergency services.
Symptoms of overdose may include:
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain laboratory tests to check your body’s response to aminocaproic acid.
Do not let anyone else take your medicine. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important that you keep a written list of all prescription and over-the-counter (over-the-counter) medications you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should take this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you go into hospital. It is also important information to take with you in case of emergencies.
- Amicar® Tablets
- Amicar® Oral Solution
Disclaimer: We have made every effort to ensure that all information is factually accurate, comprehensive and up-to-date. However, this article should not be used as a licensed health care professional’s choice of knowledge and expertise. You should always consult your doctor or other health care professional before taking any medication. The information given here is subject to change and it has not been used to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions or adverse effects. The lack of warning or other information for any drug does not indicate that the combination of medicine or medication is safe, effective or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.