Commonly used brand name(s):
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Mucolytic
Pharmacologic Class: Mucolytic Enzyme
Dornase alfa is used in the management of cystic fibrosis. It is used every day with other cystic fibrosis medicines, especially antibiotics, bronchodilators (medicines that open up narrowed breathing passages), and corticosteroids (cortisone-like medicines).
Cystic fibrosis is a condition in which thick mucus is formed in the lungs and breathing passages. The mucus blocks the airways and increases the chance of lung infections. The infections then cause the mucus to become even thicker, making it more difficult to breathe.
Dornase alfa will not cure cystic fibrosis. However, when it is used every day, it helps make breathing easier and reduces the number of serious lung infections that require treatment with antibiotics.
Dornase alfa is available only with your doctor's prescription.
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For dornase alfa, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to dornase alfa or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Dornase alfa has been studied in children 3 months of age and older and has not been shown to cause different side effects or problems in children than it does in adults, although coughing, runny or stuffy nose, and skin rashes were more common in children 3 months to 5 years of age than in other age groups.
Dornase alfa has not been tested on enough patients 65 years and older. Cystic fibrosis is a disease that usually affects children and young adults. Although there is no specific information comparing use of dornase alfa in the elderly with use in other age groups, dornase alfa is not expected to cause different side effects or problems in older people than it does in younger adults.
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Dornase alfa usually comes with patient instructions. Read them carefully before using dornase alfa.
Dornase alfa is packaged in small plastic containers called ampules. Each ampule contains one full dose of dornase alfa. Do not use an ampule that has already been opened. Also, do not use an ampule of dornase alfa after the expiration date printed on the package.
Do not use dornase alfa solution if it is cloudy or discolored.
Dornase alfa must be used in a nebulizer with a compressor . Only the following nebulizers and compressors should be used with dornase alfa:
Your health care professional will help you decide which nebulizer and compressor to use.
It is very important that you use dornase alfa only as directed. Use the mouthpiece provided with the nebulizer. Do not use a face mask with the nebulizer because less medicine will get into your lungs. Patients who are unable to inhale and exhale through the mouth for the entire nebulizer treatment may use the PARI BABY nebulizer with the supplied face mask. Make sure you understand exactly how to use dornase alfa in the nebulizer.
In order to receive the full effects of dornase alfa, you must use it every day as ordered by your doctor. If possible, dornase alfa should be used at about the same time each day. You may notice some improvement in your condition within the first week of treatment. However, some patients may not feel the full effects of dornase alfa for weeks or months.
If you are taking any other medicines for cystic fibrosis, keep taking them as you did before you started using dornase alfa, unless otherwise directed by your doctor. However, do not put any other inhaled medicine in the nebulizer at the same time that you use dornase alfa. Other inhaled medicines may be used in a clean nebulizer before or after your treatment with dornase alfa.
To prepare the nebulizer for use:
To prepare the medicine for use in the nebulizer:
To use the medicine in the nebulizer:
After using dornase alfa:
The dose of dornase alfa will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of dornase alfa. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
If you miss a dose of dornase alfa, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Store the medicine in the refrigerator in the foil pouches. However, keep the medicine from freezing. Do not leave dornase alfa out of the refrigerator for longer than 24 hours. If an ampule of medicine is left out for longer than this, it should be thrown away and a new ampule should be used.
If your condition becomes worse while you are using dornase alfa, check with your doctor.
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:Rare
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:More common
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
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