Digoxin (By mouth)

Introduction

Digoxin (di-JOX-in)

Treats heart failure and certain heart rhythm problems (arrhythmias). This medicine is also called digitalis.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Digitek, Digoxin, Lanoxin, Lanoxicaps

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to digoxin.

How to Use This Medicine

Tablet, Capsule, Liquid

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to take and how often. Do not take more medicine or take it more often than your doctor tells you to. Do not change brands of digoxin without asking your doctor.
  • It is best to take this medicine on an empty stomach. If the medicine upsets your stomach, you may take it with food or milk.
  • Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon or medicine cup.
  • Your doctor may want you to check your pulse before you take each dose of this medicine. A nurse or other caregiver can teach you how to check your pulse. Your doctor will tell you how fast your pulse should be (for adults, the usual range is 60 to 100 heartbeats per minute). If your pulse is too high or too low, call your doctor before you take the medicine.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If you are more than 12 hours late, wait until it is time for your next regular and skip the missed dose. You should not use two doses at the same time.
  • If you miss your doses for 2 days or longer, call your doctor.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using diet pills, steroids, bumetanide (Bumex®), cholestyramine (Questran® Colestid®), erythromycin (Erythro-Tab®), amiodarone (Cordarone®), indomethacin (Indocin®), itraconazole (Sporanox®), metoclopramide (Reglan®), nicotine gum, quinidine (Cardioquin®, Quinaglute®), rifampin (Rifadin®), Ritalin®, St John's wort, Synthroid®, sulfasalazine (Azulfidine®), diuretics or "water pills" (such as furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide, Aldactazide®, Aldactone®, Dyazide®, Lasix®, Maxzide®, Midamor®, Moduretic®), heart or blood pressure medicine (such as atenolol, metoprolol, verapamil, Adalat®, Cardizem®, Lotrel®, Plendil®, Procardia®, Rythmol®, Tiazac®, Toprol®) , or medicines to treat cancer.
  • You should not use antacids (such as Maalox® or Mylanta®) at the same time you are taking digoxin.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, too much calcium in your blood (hypercalcemia), or thyroid disorders. Tell your doctor if you are on dialysis, have had a recent heart attack, or if you have recently been vomiting or had diarrhea.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood or urine at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
  • Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. You may need to stop using this medicine several days before having surgery or medical tests.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Blurred vision or yellow-colored vision
  • Confusion, weakness, irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, numbness or tingling in hands, feet, or lips
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Headache, unusual thoughts
  • Mild skin rash, hives, or itching

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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