What does this medicine do?
Dalteparin (dal te PAIR in) is an anticoagulant, which helps prevent blood clots from forming in the blood vessels. It does not dissolve clots, although you may hear people call it a "blood thinner." In order for this medicine to safely help your child, it must be given correctly. It is given as a shot under your skin. It starts to work within 2 hours and the effects last up to 12 hours.
How should I give dalteparin?
It is given as a shot subcutaneously (just under the skin) once or twice a day. Give the shot in the fatty part of the skin. You will be taught how to give the shot. See the education sheet, "Injections (subcutaneous)."
Give the shot at the same time each day to keep a steady level of the medicine in the bloodstream.
Use this medicine exactly as prescribed, even if your child feels fine.
Your child should be awake and alert when taking any medicine.
Are there any precautions about food or other medicines?
While on dalteparin, DO NOT TAKE:
- any other type of blood thinner medicine, such as warfarin (Coumadin®, or another brand)
- any medicine containing aspirin
- ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®, or another brand)
- any non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicine (NSAIDs)
Check with the doctor, nurse practitioner, or pharmacist before giving any other prescription or non-prescription medicines, herbs, or vitamins.
What should I do if a dose is missed?
If a dose is missed, give it as soon as you remember, unless it is less than 6 hours until the next dose. In that case, skip the missed dose and continue with the regular schedule. Never give a double dose.
What are the side effects?
- Pain, redness, or bruising at the injection site
- Swelling, or a lump under the skin where the shot is given
- Bleeding problems*
- Throwing up blood or something that looks like coffee grounds.
- Warmth or redness in face, neck, arms, or upper chest.
* Ways to prevent bleeding are:
- Brush teeth gently with a soft toothbrush.
- Floss teeth gently after brushing (for children younger than 9 years, parents should help with brushing and flossing).
- Cut fingernails and toenails carefully.
- Prevent constipation by drinking extra fluids and eating high-fiber foods.
- Use an electric razor rather than a razor blade.
When should I call the clinic?
- Bleeding that won't stop
- Pale skin with easy bruising
- Swelling or pain in one or both legs
- Sudden numbness, weakness, confusion, dizziness, or headache
- fast heartbeat
- signs of allergic reaction:
- rash or hives
- trouble breathing - call 911
What else do I need to know?
Store at room temperature.
Tell your child's doctor if he/she uses this drug before spinal anesthesia, spinal treatment, or surgery. You and your child should know the names and doses of all medicines he or she is taking. Share this information with anyone involved in your child's care. Please bring the medicine container when your child comes to the clinic or emergency department.
Blood samples may be needed to be sure the dose is correct. Remember to schedule a blood sample just before a dose is due to be given.
Always make sure you have enough medicine on hand. Each time you refill the prescription, check to see how many refills are left. If no refills are left, the pharmacy will need 2 or 3 days to contact the clinic to renew the prescription.
Read the label before giving the first dose. Be sure it is what was prescribed. If the medicine looks different to you after a refill, ask your pharmacist about it before giving it. Store all medicines in their original containers and away from direct sunlight or heat. Do not store in humid places such as the bathroom. Keep them out of children's reach. Lock the medicine up if possible.
If too much or the wrong kind of medicine is taken, call the Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222. If your child is unconscious or has a seizure, call 911.
This is not specific to your child but provides general information. If you have any questions, please call your clinic or pharmacy.
Last reviewed by Children's pharmacy 8/2015
This page is not specific to your child, but provides general information on the topic above. If you have any questions, please call your clinic. For more reading material about this and other health topics, please call or visit Children's Family Resource Center library, or visit www.childrensmn.org/educationmaterials.
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