Antidotes for medications pharmacology review for nurses!
This review will cover the most common antidotes you want to remember as a nurse and for exams. So, why do you want to know about antidotes? They help reverse the effects of certain medication toxicities, overdoses, or poisonings that your patient may experience.
For example, let’s say that you’re administering IV Fentanyl and the patient doesn’t tolerate it well and experiences severe respiratory depression. As the nurse you want to know the antidote for opioids (Fentanyl is an opioid) to help reverse those effects for when the physician orders it. Therefore, you want to be prepared and act fast by having the medication readily available.
Lecture on Antidotes for Medications for Pharmacology
Antidotes for Medications Pharmacology Review
What does the term antidote mean? Let’s break down the word.
Anti: “against” Dote: “to give”
Antidote means “to give against”. Antidotes work to reverse or work against specific toxicities.
Antidotes to Remember as a Nurse
The antidotes are bolded:
- Digoxin (Cardiac glycosides) -> Digibind or digoxin immune FAB….DigiFab
- Heparin (anticoagulant) -> Protamine Sulfate
- Warfarin (anticoagulant) -> Vitamin K
- Benzodiazepines (sedatives…end with “pam or lam”….diazepam, alprazolam, etc.”) -> Flumazenil
- Opioids (pain reliever…morphine, tramadol, fentanyl , etc.) -> Naloxone
- Acetaminophen (pain reliever) -> Acetylcysteine
- Beta Blockers (end with lol….Atenolol, Metoprolol, etc.”)) -> Glucagon
- Anticholinergic Toxicity (various medications can lead to this that cause anticholinergic effects…antihistamines, atropine , etc.) -> Physostigmine
- Cholinergic Toxicity (organophosphates and carbamates….used in insecticides) -> Atropine
- Magnesium Sulfate -> Calcium gluconate
- Cyanide Poisoning -> Hydroxocobalamin
- Ethylene glycol (found in antifreeze) or Methanol (found in windshield washer fluid) -> Fomepizole
- Lead Toxicity -> Succimer (oral) or Calcium disodium edetate (calcium EDTA) (injection)*
- Iron Toxicity -> Deferoxamine*
*Chelation agents: method for removing metals from the blood
Now test your knowledge by taking the antidotes for medications pharmacology quiz.