Reaction to Medicine (Other Type)

You are having a reaction to a medicine you have taken. This may not be the same as an allergic reaction. It's an unwanted side effect of a medicine. This can cause many symptoms, such as:

  • Dizziness or headache

  • Rash

  • Flushing or a hot feeling

  • Nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain

  • Diarrhea or constipation

  • Trouble breathing

  • High or low blood pressure

A reaction can be an upset stomach from something such as aspirin or ibuprofen. It can also be feeling faint after taking a blood pressure medicine, feeling anxious, and many other things. Symptoms can range from very mild to very severe.

In most cases, the reaction goes away in 1 to 12 hours. But it will likely happen again if you take this same medicine. Your healthcare provider will advise you if you need to change how much, when, or how often you take this medicine. They may also advise you to stop using this medicine. Or your provider may have you switch to another one. 

Home care

  • Another medicine may be advised to reduce your symptoms until the medicine’s effect wears off. Follow your healthcare provider’s advice.

  • When the medicine’s effect has worn off, there should be no more problem if you don't take the same medicine again. 

  • Ask your provider if you should also stay away from similar medicines. Write down the information so you will remember it.

  • Be sure the medicine reaction is put into your health record.

Follow-up care

Follow up with your healthcare provider, or as advised if your symptoms are not better in 24 hours.

When to get medical advice

Call your healthcare provider right away if any of these occur:

  • New symptoms that worry you

  • Your current symptoms get worse, including rash or facial swelling

  • Symptoms are not eased by the treatment advised

  • Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, or as advised by your provider

  • Chills

Call 911

Call 911 if any of these occur:

  • Trouble breathing or swallowing, or wheezing

  • Hoarse voice or trouble speaking

  • Confusion

  • Extreme drowsiness or trouble waking up

  • Fainting or loss of consciousness

  • Fast or slow heart rate

  • Very low or very high blood pressure

  • Vomiting blood, or large amounts of blood in stool

  • Seizure

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