Which medications in the drug class Antidotes, Other are used in the treatment of Methemoglobinemia?

Updated: Dec 09, 2018
  • Author: Mary Denshaw-Burke, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Emmanuel C Besa, MD  more...
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Answer

Antidotes, Other

Antidotes (eg, methylene blue) are used to counteract methemoglobinemia, acting as cofactors in the nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH)-dependent methemoglobin reductase system. Cimetidine may be used in dapsone-induced methemoglobinemia.

Methylene blue

Methylene blue increases the activity of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NADH)-methemoglobin reductase in red blood cells (RBCs), assisting in the conversion of ferric (Fe3+) to ferrous (Fe2+) iron. It is available as a 1% solution (10 mg/mL). Most patients require only 1 dose. Resolution of toxicity should be seen within 1 hour, often within 20 minutes.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns against using methylene blue concurrently with serotonergic psychiatric drugs, unless such usage is indicated for life-threatening or urgent conditions. Methylene blue may increase central nervous system (CNS) serotonin levels as a result of monoamine oxidase (MAO)-A inhibition, increasing the risk of serotonin syndrome.


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