heparin (injection)

Pronunciation: HEP a rin

What is the most important information I should know about heparin injection?

Multum donot

Heparin injection should not be used to flush (clean out) an intravenous (IV) catheter. A separate heparin product is available to use as catheter lock flush.

Multum donot

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to heparin, or if you have uncontrolled bleeding or a severe lack of platelets in your blood.

Before using heparin, tell your doctor if you have high blood pressure, an infection involving your heart, hemophilia or other bleeding disorder, a stomach or intestinal disorder, liver disease, or if you are on your period.

Multum emt

Heparin can cause you to have bleeding episodes while you are using it and for several weeks after you stop. Call your doctor at once if you have easy bruising or unusual bleeding, such as a nosebleed, black or bloody tarry stools, or any bleeding that will not stop.

Multum donot

Certain medicines can increase your risk of bleeding while you are using heparin, such as aspirin or other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) including ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Treximet), celecoxib (Celebrex), diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze), indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic), ketoprofen (Orudis), ketorolac (Toradol), mefenamic acid (Ponstel), nabumetone (Relafen), piroxicam (Feldene), and others.

Multum donot

Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Women over 60 years of age may be more likely to have bleeding episodes while using heparin.

What is heparin injection?

Heparin is an anticoagulant (blood thinner) that prevents the formation of blood clots.

Heparin is used to treat and prevent blood clots in the veins, arteries, or lung. Heparin is also used before surgery to reduce the risk of blood clots.

Multum donot

Heparin injection should not be used to flush (clean out) an intravenous (IV) catheter. A separate heparin product is available to use as catheter lock flush.

Heparin may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using heparin injection?

Multum donot

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to heparin, or if you have:

  • a severe lack of platelets in your blood; or
  • uncontrolled bleeding.

To make sure you can safely use heparin, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • an infection of the lining of your heart (also called bacterial endocarditis);
  • uncontrolled high blood pressure;
  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder, such as hemophilia;
  • a stomach or intestinal disorder;
  • liver disease; or
  • if you are having a menstrual period.
Multum nopreg

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether heparin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

Multum nobrfeed

Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Women over 60 years of age may be more likely to have bleeding episodes while using heparin.

How should I use heparin injection?

Heparin is injected under the skin or into a vein through an IV. You may be shown how to use an IV at home.

Multum donot

Do not self-inject this medicine if you do not fully understand how to give the injection and properly dispose of used needles, IV tubing, and other items used to inject the medicine.

Do not use the medication if it has changed colors or has particles in it. Call your doctor for a new prescription.

Multum donot

You may be switched from injectable heparin to an oral (taken by mouth) blood thinner. Do not stop using the heparin until your doctor tells you to. You may need to use both the injection and the oral forms of heparin for a short time.

Multum rt

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Call your doctor for instructions if you miss a dose of heparin.

What happens if I overdose?

Multum emt

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include easy bruising, nosebleeds, blood in your urine or stools, black or tarry stools, or any bleeding that will not stop.

What should I avoid while using heparin injection?

Multum donot

Certain medicines can increase your risk of bleeding while you are using heparin, such as aspirin or other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) including ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Treximet), celecoxib (Celebrex), diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze), indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic), ketoprofen (Orudis), ketorolac (Toradol), mefenamic acid (Ponstel), nabumetone (Relafen), piroxicam (Feldene), and others.

What are the possible side effects of heparin injection?

Multum emt

Heparin can cause you to have bleeding episodes while you are using it and for several weeks after you stop. Call your doctor at once if you have easy bruising or unusual bleeding, such as a nosebleed, blood in your urine or stools, black or tarry stools, or any bleeding that will not stop.

Multum emt

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: nausea, vomiting, sweating, hives, itching, trouble breathing, swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat, or feeling like you might pass out..

Some people receiving a heparin injection have had a reaction to the infusion (when the medicine is injected into the vein). Tell your caregiver right away if you feel nauseated, light-headed, sweaty, or short of breath during or after a heparin injection.

Multum donot

Stop using heparin and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
  • sudden severe headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
  • chest pain, sudden cough, wheezing, rapid breathing, fast heart rate;
  • pain, swelling, warmth, or redness in one or both legs;
  • trouble breathing;
  • (in an infant) extreme drowsiness, weakness, or gasping for breath; or
  • fever, chills, runny nose, or watery eyes.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild pain, redness, warmth, or skin changes where the medicine was injected;
  • mild itching of your feet; or
  • bluish-colored skin.

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.

What other drugs will affect heparin injection?

Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • another blood thinner, such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven);
  • digoxin (digitalis, Lanoxin, Lanoxicaps);
  • dipyridamole (Persantine);
  • hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil, Quineprox);
  • ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin);
  • indomethacin (Indocin);
  • nicotine cigarettes, gum, lozenges, or skin patches;
  • nitroglycerin (Nitro Dur, Nitrolingual, Nitrostat, Transderm Nitro, and others);
  • an antibiotic such as demeclocycline (Declomycin), doxycycline (Adoxa, Alodox, Avidoxy, Oraxyl, Doryx, Oracea, Vibramycin), minocycline (Dynacin, Minocin, Solodyn), or tetracycline (Ala-Tet, Brodspec, Panmycin, Sumycin, Tetracap);
  • cold, allergy, or sleep medications (Allerest, Benadryl, Chlor-Trimeton, Dimetapp, Sominex, Tylenol PM, and others); or
  • salicylates such as aspirin, Nuprin Backache Caplet, Kaopectate, KneeRelief, Pamprin Cramp Formula, Pepto-Bismol, Tricosal, Trilisate, and others.

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with heparin. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about heparin.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2013 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 9.01. Revision date: 2/14/2012.

Your use of the content provided in this service indicates that you have read, understood and agree to the End-User License Agreement, which can be accessed by clicking on this link.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.