Mifepristone

Adult Medication

Brand Names: US

Korlym; Mifeprex

Warning

If using to end pregnancy:

  • Very bad infections, bleeding, or other problems may rarely happen after any type of abortion. This includes after using this drug to end pregnancy. Sometimes, these problems may be deadly.
  • Be sure you know who to call and what do if you have an emergency. This includes going to an ER (emergency room) if you cannot reach your doctor. Call your doctor right away if you have a fever that does not go away, very bad belly pain, fast heartbeat, a lot of vaginal bleeding that does not go away, or passing out.
  • If this drug does not cause a full abortion, surgery may be needed. Make sure that you know this drug, what it is for, how to use it, and when to go back to your doctor. You must agree to the abortion and surgery if needed. You must read the medication guide and sign a patient contract form.
  • If you are going to an ER (emergency room) or some other doctor, take the medication guide with you.
  • If this drug does not work in 2 days, your doctor may give you another drug. Call your doctor right away if you have belly pain, weakness, upset stomach or throwing up, or loose stools (diarrhea) more than 24 hours after taking the other drug.
  • You may only get this drug through a special program. Talk with your doctor.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Use in pregnant women will cause fetal loss.
  • Do not take if you are pregnant. A pregnancy test will be done to show that you are NOT pregnant before starting this drug. Use a type of birth control that is not hormone-based while taking this drug and for 1 month after stopping this drug. Talk with your doctor.
  • If this drug is stopped for more than 14 days, another pregnancy test will need to be done. Talk with your doctor.

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to end a pregnancy.
  • It is used to lower blood sugar in patients with Cushing’s syndrome.
  • It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take this drug?

For all uses of this drug:

  • If you have an allergy to mifepristone or any other part of this drug.
  • 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 are breast-feeding or plan to breast-feed.

If using to end pregnancy:

  • If you have any of these health problems: Adrenal failure, bleeding problems, or porphyrias.
  • If you have a pregnancy that is not inside the uterus (ectopic pregnancy).
  • If you have an IUD (intrauterine device) in place.
  • If you are not able to follow what your doctor tells you for treatment to end your pregnancy or you are not able to get to an ER (emergency room) if you need one.
  • If you are more than 10 weeks pregnant.
  • If you are not able to learn or follow the Patient-Physician contract.
  • If you have a growth in the ovary, fallopian tube, or areas around these parts.
  • If you are taking a blood thinner or are on a long-term steroid, such as prednisone.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • If you have any of these health problems: Change in the cells lining your uterus, endometrial cancer, or vaginal bleeding.
  • If you do not have Cushing’s syndrome.
  • If you are pregnant or may be pregnant. Do not take this drug if you are pregnant.
  • If you have liver disease.
  • If you must take a steroid drug like prednisone for other health problems.
  • If you take any drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) that must not be taken with this drug, like certain drugs that are used for high cholesterol, migraine headache, blocking the immune system, mood or mental problems, and pain. There are many drugs that must not be taken with this drug.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.
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 this drug 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 this drug?

For all uses of this drug:

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take this drug. 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 this drug affects you.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you drink grapefruit juice or eat grapefruit often, talk with your doctor.

If using to end pregnancy:

  • You can get pregnant again right after your pregnancy ends. If you do not want to get pregnant again, start using birth control that you can trust to prevent pregnancy as soon as your pregnancy ends or before you start having sex again.
  • It is normal to have vaginal bleeding or spotting for about 9 to 16 days after using this drug. Sometimes, this has lasted for up to 30 days. Call your doctor right away if vaginal bleeding continues, if you have heavy vaginal bleeding that does not go away, or if you are worried about your vaginal bleeding.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may not work as well to prevent pregnancy. Use some other kind of birth control also, like a condom, when taking this drug and for 1 month after care ends.
  • If you are a woman of childbearing age, take a monthly pregnancy test.
  • If you get pregnant while taking this drug or within 1 month after your last dose, call your doctor right away.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

For all uses of this drug:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Very bad dizziness or passing out.
  • Very bad headache.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • A fast heartbeat.
  • Very upset stomach or throwing up.

If using to end pregnancy:

  • Signs of infection like fever, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, or wound that will not heal.
  • Bleeding a lot (soaking 2 pads per hour).
  • Very bad belly pain.
  • Very loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Very bad vaginal irritation.
  • Pelvic pain.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Signs of low potassium levels like muscle pain or weakness, muscle cramps, or a heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • Vaginal bleeding. There may be more bleeding than from a heavy period.
  • Vaginal discharge.
  • Anxiety.
  • Back pain.
  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Swelling in the arms or legs.
  • Not able to sleep.
  • Low blood sugar may occur. Signs may be dizziness, headache, feeling sleepy, feeling weak, shaking, a fast heartbeat, confusion, hunger, or sweating. Call the doctor right away if any of these signs occur. Follow what you have been told to do if low blood sugar occurs. This may include taking glucose tablets, liquid glucose, or some fruit juices.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

For all uses of this drug:

  • Dizziness.
  • Headache.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Belly pain.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.

If using to end pregnancy:

  • Back pain.
  • Stomach cramps.
  • Vaginal discharge.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Not hungry.
  • Feeling sleepy.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Heartburn.
  • Joint pain.
  • Sore throat.
  • Stuffy nose.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best taken?

Use this drug as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

If using to end pregnancy:

  • Follow how to take this drug as you have been told by your doctor. Do not use more than you were told to use.
  • You will need to take this drug with another drug called misoprostol to pass the pregnancy. Be sure you know when and how to take misoprostol after taking this drug. Check with you doctor or pharmacist if you have questions.
  • Most women will pass the pregnancy within 2 to 24 hours after taking misoprostol. During this time, you will have bleeding and cramping that will most likely be heavier than your normal period. Be sure that you take the misoprostol in a proper place so you are ready. Talk with your doctor.
  • Follow up with the doctor as you have been told.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Take with food.
  • Swallow whole. Do not chew, break, or crush.
  • If you have trouble swallowing, talk with your doctor.
  • Keep taking this drug as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

If using to end pregnancy:

  • Call your doctor to find out what to do.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
  • If you miss taking this drug for a few days in a row, call your doctor before you start taking it again.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?

If using to end pregnancy:

  • If you need to store this drug at home, talk with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • Store at room temperature.
  • Protect from light.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.

All products:

  • 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.

General drug facts

  • 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. If you have any questions about this drug, 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.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine 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 this medicine. 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.

Last Reviewed Date

2016-04-01

Copyright

© 2016 Wolters Kluwer Clinical Drug Information, Inc. and its affiliates and/or licensors. All rights reserved.