What is digoxin?
Digoxin is derived from the leaves of a digitalis plant. Digoxin helps make the heart beat stronger and with a more regular rhythm.
Digoxin is used to treat congestive heart failure.
Digoxin is also used to treat atrial fibrillation, a heart rhythm disorder of the atria (the upper chambers of the heart that allow blood to flow into the heart).
Digoxin may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
You should not use this medication if you are allergic to digoxin, or if you have ventricular fibrillation (a heart rhythm disorder of the ventricles, or lower chambers of the heart that allow blood to flow out of the heart).
If you have certain conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely use this medication. Before using digoxin, tell your doctor if you have:
- certain heart conditions, especially "AV block" (unless you have a pacemaker);
- a recent history of heart attack;
- kidney disease;
- a thyroid disorder;
- an electrolyte imbalance (such as low levels of calcium, potassium, or magnesium in your blood); or
- if you are malnourished or have recently been sick with vomiting or diarrhea.
FDA pregnancy category C. Digoxin may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.
Digoxin can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Older adults may be more likely to have side effects from digoxin.
Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated during exercise, in hot weather, or by not drinking enough fluids. Digoxin overdose can occur more easily if you are dehydrated.
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Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.
Overdose symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, blurred vision, seeing halos around lights or objects, severe skin rash, fast/slow or uneven heartbeats, and feeling like you might pass out.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If your next dose is less than 12 hours away, wait until then to take the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
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Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
- fast, slow, or uneven heart rate;
- bloody or black, tarry stools;
- blurred vision, yellowed vision; or
- confusion, hallucinations, unusual thoughts or behavior.
Less serious side effects may include:
- mild nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
- feeling weak or dizzy;
- enlarged breasts in men; or
- mild skin rash.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
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Many drugs can interact with digoxin. Below is just a partial list. Tell your doctor if you are using:
- an antacid, or Kaopectate;
- alprazolam (Xanax);
- cancer medications;
- clonidine (Catapres);
- supplements or medications that contain calcium;
- a diuretic (water pill), such as spironolactone (Aldactone, Aldactazide);
- amphotericin B (Fungizone, AmBisome, Abelcet);
- cholestyramine (Questran, Prevalite);
- epinephrine (EpiPen);
- guanabenz (Wytensin) or guanfacine (Tenex);
- indomethacin (Indocin);
- isoproterenol (Isuprel);
- itraconazole (Sporanox);
- levothyroxine (Synthroid, Levothroid, and others);
- methyldopa (Aldomet);
- metoclopramide (Reglan);
- neomycin (Mycifradin, Neo-Fradin, Neo-Tab);
- rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate);
- sulfasalazine (Azulfidine); or
- an antibiotic such as erythromycin (E.E.S., EryPed, Ery-Tab, Erythrocin), clarithromycin (Biaxin), or tetracycline (Brodspec, Panmycin, Sumycin, Tetracap);
- a beta-blocker such as carvedilol (Coreg), metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol), and others;
- a calcium channel blocker such as amlodipine (Norvasc), diltiazem (Tiazac, Cartia, Cardizem), felodipine (Plendil), nisoldipine (Sular), verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan), and others;
- decongestant cold or allergy medicine, or nasal sprays such as Afrin, Duramist, Neo-Synephrine, Tysine Nasal, and others;
- a heart rhythm medication such as amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone), propafenone (Rythmol), or quinidine (Quinaglute, Quinidex, Quin-Release); or
- steroids such as prednisone, fluticasone (Advair), mometasone (Asmanex, Nasonex), dexamethasone (Decadron, Hexadrol) and others.
This list is not complete and there are many other medicines that can interact with digoxin. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor. Keep a list with you of all the medicines you use and show this list to any doctor or other healthcare provider who treats you.
Cardoxin, Digitek, Lanoxin, digoxin, and Lanoxicaps
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Copyright 1996-2004 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version 2.05. Revision date 8/23/04