Name: Alagesic LQ
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What is narcotic analgesic-apap-caffeine-butalbital-oral, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Butalbital/acetaminophen/caffeine is a combination product used for treating headache.
Butalbital is a narcotic that depresses the central nervous system.
Acetaminophen is a pain reliever and fever reducer. It is the active compound in Tylenol. Acetaminophen relieves pain by elevating the pain threshold, that is, by requiring a greater amount of pain to develop before a person feels it. It reduces fever through its action on the heat-regulating center of the brain. Specifically, it tells the center to lower the body's temperature when the temperature is elevated.
Caffeine has pain relieving properties and may boost the action of other pain relievers by mechanisms that are not well understood. It may reduce the activity of pain sensing nerves in the brain. The FDA approved butalbital/acetaminophen/caffeine in November 1984.
Patients taking combination drugs of butalbital, acetaminophen, and caffeine should review the patient safety information such as specific side effects, drug interactions, and pregnancy safety for each of these drugs.
Which drugs or supplements interact with narcotic analgesic-apap-caffeine-butalbital-oral?
Butalbital/acetaminophen/caffeine should not be used with MAOI (monoamine oxidase inhibitors) like phenelzine (Nardil) and selegiline (Emsam) because they can significantly increase central nervous system effects of butalbital and increased blood levels of caffeine.
Butalbital can increase the effects of narcotic pain killers, alcohol, sedative or hypnotic medications, and other medications that depress the central nervous system. Loss of consciousness, troubled breathing, lowered heart rate, coma, and in severe cases death can occur.
Uses of Alagesic LQ
- It is used to treat tension headaches.
- It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Alagesic LQ?
- If you have an allergy to butalbital, acetaminophen, caffeine, or any other part of Alagesic LQ (butalbital, acetaminophen, and caffeine solution).
- If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
- If you have porphyria.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this medicine.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Alagesic LQ with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Alagesic LQ?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take this medicine. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Alagesic LQ affects you.
- To lower the chance of feeling dizzy or passing out, rise slowly if you have been sitting or lying down. Be careful going up and down stairs.
- This medicine may be habit-forming with long-term use.
- If you have been taking this medicine for a long time or at high doses, it may not work as well and you may need higher doses to get the same effect. This is known as tolerance. Call your doctor if Alagesic LQ stops working well. Do not take more than ordered.
- Do not take this medicine for longer than you were told by your doctor.
- If you have been taking Alagesic LQ on a regular basis and you stop it all of a sudden, you may have signs of withdrawal. Do not stop taking this medicine all of a sudden without calling your doctor. Tell your doctor if you have any bad effects.
- Avoid other sources of acetaminophen. Check labels closely. Too much acetaminophen may cause problems.
- This medicine may affect certain lab tests. Tell all of your health care providers and lab workers that you take Alagesic LQ.
- Avoid alcohol or other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
- Call your doctor right away if you take more than 4,000 mg (milligrams) of acetaminophen in a day, even if you feel well.
- Be careful if you have G6PD deficiency. Anemia may happen.
- Limit your use of caffeine (for example, tea, coffee, cola) and chocolate. Use with this medicine may cause nervousness, shakiness, and a fast heartbeat.
- If you are 65 or older, use Alagesic LQ with care. You could have more side effects.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this medicine while you are pregnant.
- Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.
How do I store and/or throw out Alagesic LQ?
- Store at room temperature.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.
Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
- Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
- Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about this medicine, please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take Alagesic LQ or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to Alagesic LQ. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.
Review Date: October 4, 2017
For Healthcare Professionals
Applies to acetaminophen / butalbital / caffeine: oral capsule, oral liquid, oral tablet
Common (1% to 10%): Drowsiness, lightheadedness, dizziness, sedation
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Headache, shaky feeling, tingly, fainting, numbness, seizures, mental confusion, excitement or depression due to intolerance
Frequency not reported: Tremor[Ref]
The most frequently reported adverse events have included drowsiness, lightheadedness, dizziness, sedation, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and intoxicated feeling.[Ref]
Frequency not reported: Liver failure[Ref]
Acute liver failure has been reported with acetaminophen use; many case have been associated with use at doses in excess of 4 g/day, and often involving more than 1 acetaminophen-containing product.[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Dry mouth, difficulty swallowing, heartburn, flatulence, constipation[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Diuresis
Frequency not reported: Nephrotoxicity[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Allergic reactions
Postmarketing reports: Anaphylaxis
Postmarketing reports: Anaphylaxis[Ref]
Frequency not reported: Thrombocytopenia, agranulocytosis[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hyperhidrosis, pruritus
Frequency not reported: Toxic epidermal necrolysis, erythema multiforme
Rare (less than 0.1%): Serious skin reactions such as acute generalized exanthematous pustulosis, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, and toxic epidermal necrolysis
Frequency not reported: Rash[Ref]
Several cases of dermatologic reactions including toxic epidermal necrolysis and erythema multiforme have been reported.[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Shortness of breath
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Nasal congestion[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Tachycardia
Frequency not reported: Cardiac stimulation[Ref]
Common (1% to 10%): Intoxicated feeling
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Fatigue, high energy, heavy eyelids, sluggishness, hot spells, fever, earache, tinnitus[Ref]
Frequency not reported: Hyperglycemia[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Leg pain, muscle fatigue[Ref]
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Agitation, euphoria
Frequency not reported: Irritability, dependence[Ref]
Some side effects of Alagesic LQ may not be reported. Always consult your doctor or healthcare specialist for medical advice. You may also report side effects to the FDA.