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Pronounced: BYOO-meks
Generic name: Bumetanide

Why is this drug prescribed: Bumex is used to lower the amount of excess salt and water in your body by increasing the output of urine. It is prescribed in the treatment of edema, or fluid retention, associated with congestive heart failure and liver or kidney disease. It is also occasionally prescribed, along with other drugs, to treat high blood pressure.

Most important fact about this drug: Bumex is a powerful drug. If taken in excessive amounts, it can severely decrease the levels of water and minerals, especially potassium, your body needs to function. Therefore, your doctor should monitor your dose carefully.

How should you take this medication: Bumex can increase the frequency of urination and may cause loss of sleep if taken at night. Therefore, if you are taking a single dose of Bumex daily, it should be taken in the morning after breakfast. If you take more than one dose a day, take the last dose no later than 6:00 pm. --If you miss a dose... Take the forgotten dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Never take 2 doses at the same time. --Storage instructions... Store at room temperature.

What side effects may occur: Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Bumex. More common side effects may include: Dizziness, headache, low blood pressure, muscle cramps, nausea Signs of too much potassium loss are: Dry mouth, irregular heartbeat, muscle cramps or pains, unusual tiredness or weakness Less common or rare side effects may include: Abdominal pain, black stools, chest pain, dehydration, diarrhea, dry mouth, ear discomfort, fatigue, hearing loss, itching, joint pain, kidney failure, muscle and bone pain, nipple tenderness, premature ejaculation and difficulty maintaining erection, rapid breathing, skin rash or hives, sweating, upset stomach, vertigo, vomiting, weakness

Why should this drug not be prescribed: Bumex should not be used if you are unable to urinate or if you are dehydrated. If you are sensitive to or have ever had an allergic reaction to Bumex or similar drugs such as Lasix, you should not take this medication. Make sure your doctor is aware of any drug reactions you have experienced.

Special warnings about this medication: If you are allergic to sulfur-containing drugs such as sulfonamides (antibacterial drugs), check with your doctor before taking Bumex. Bumex can decrease the number of platelets in your blood. Your doctor should monitor your blood status regularly. Bumex can cause a loss of potassium from the body. Your doctor may recommend foods or fluids high in potassium or may want you to take a potassium supplement to help prevent this. Follow your doctor's recommendation carefully. While taking this medication you may feel dizzy or light-headed or actually faint when getting up from a lying or sitting position. If getting up slowly does not help or if this problem continues, notify your doctor.

Possible food and drug interactions when taking this medication: If Bumex is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Bumex with the following: Blood pressure medications such as Vasotec and Tenormin Indomethacin (Indocin) and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs Probenecid (Benemid) The combination of Bumex and certain antibiotics or cisplatin (Platinol) may increase the risk of hearing loss. Because Bumex can lower potassium levels, the combination of Bumex and digitalis or digoxin (Lanoxin) may increase the risk of changes in heartbeat. The combination of Bumex and lithium (Lithonate) may increase the levels of lithium in the body, causing it to become poisonous.

Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding: The effects of Bumex during pregnancy have not been adequately studied. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. It is not known if this medication appears in breast milk. Your doctor may advise you to discontinue breastfeeding your baby until your treatment with Bumex is finished.

Recommended dosage: ADULTS: The usual total daily dose is 0.5 to 2.0 milligrams a day. For most people, this is taken as a single dose. However, if the initial dose is not adequate, your doctor may have you take a second and, possibly, a third dose at 4- to 5-hour intervals, up to a maximum daily dose of 10 milligrams. For the continuing control of edema, your doctor may tell you to take Bumex on alternate days or for 3 to 4 days at a time with rest periods of 1 to 2 days in between. If you have liver failure, your dose will be kept to a minimum and increased very carefully. CHILDREN: The safety and effectiveness of Bumex have not been established in children below the age of 18.

Overdosage: An overdose of Bumex can lead to severe dehydration, reduction of blood volume, and severe problems with the circulatory system. The signs of an overdose include: Cramps, dizziness, lethargy (sluggishness), loss or lack of appetite, mental confusion, vomiting, weakness If you suspect an overdose, get medical attention immediately.

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