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Cordarone is scientifically known as amiodarone HCl and is a prescription drug used to control and treat the symptoms of irregular heart rhythm (Ventricular Arrhythmias). It is classified as a class III antiarrhythmic medication, and it works partly by increasing the time before a heart cell can contract.
Amiodarone works by blocking certain electrical signals in the heart that can cause an irregular heartbeat. By doing this, it helps to correct the rhythm of your heart and stabilize your heart rate.
Uses and Dosage
Cordarone is available in tablet form for oral administration. A typical prescription dosage is one or two tablets daily, and patients may take the medication with or without meals, as directed by their healthcare provider. Swallow the tablet whole with a glass of water, and the pill should not be chewed, cut, or crushed.
To ensure the best results, take Cordarone regularly and according to the prescribed dosing schedule. Patients should not make any changes to their dosage or frequency without consulting their healthcare provider, as this can vary based on their medical condition and response to treatment. Abruptly discontinuing Cordarone can potentially worsen the condition, and patients should follow their healthcare provider's instructions if they need to stop taking the medication.
To initiate treatment with Cordarone, a loading dose in the range of 800 to 1600 mg per day is typically prescribed until the patient achieves an initial therapeutic response. This period often lasts between one and three weeks. Once adequate control of arrhythmia is achieved, or if serious side effects become apparent, the Cordarone dose should be reduced to 600 to 800 mg per day for one month. Subsequently, the maintenance dose, which is typically 400 mg per day, can be prescribed.
Common Side Effects of Cordarone (Amiodarone):
- Tiredness or fatigue
- Loss of appetite
- Shaking or tremors
- Trouble sleeping or insomnia
Serious Side Effects of Cordarone (Amiodarone):
- Bleeding or easy bruising
- Skin blisters
- Feeling of numbness or tingling in your hands or feet
- Loss of coordination
- Vision problems
- Uncontrolled movements
- Irregular heartbeat
- Severe dizziness
- Hyperthyroidism or overactive thyroid
- Symptoms of heart failure (sudden weight gain, unusual tiredness, swelling of the ankles and feet, shortness of breath)
Form and Strength
Cordarone (Amiodarone) is available in the following forms and strengths:
- 100 mg
- 200 mg
- 100 mg
- 200 mg
- The use of Cordarone during pregnancy or breastfeeding has to be avaoided, as it may cause fetal harm or interfere with breast milk production.
- Cordarone may interact with other medications, and patients should inform their healthcare provider of all prescription and over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements they are taking before starting treatment with Cordarone.
- The use of Cordarone may increase the effects of blood thinners or other anti-arrhythmic medications, and it may decrease the effects of medications used to treat thyroid problems.
- Cordarone may interact with grapefruit or grapefruit juice and increase the risk of side effects. Patients should avoid consuming grapefruit or grapefruit juice while taking Cordarone.
- Cordarone can be used in patients with heart failure, but the benefits and risks of treatment should be carefully considered based on the individual's medical history and current clinical status. Patients with heart failure should be closely monitored during Cordarone therapy.
- The risk of pulmonary toxicity, liver toxicity, or cardiac toxicity, which can be potentially severe or even fatal. Symptoms of these conditions may include shortness of breath, coughing, chest pain, or yellowing of the skin or eyes.
- The need for regular monitoring of lung function and thyroid function, as Cordarone may cause potentially serious side effects on these organs.
- The potential for interactions with other medications, including certain antibiotics, antifungal agents, or antidepressants, may increase the risk of side effects.
- The need to avoid exposure to the sun or artificial UV rays, as Cordarone may make the skin more sensitive to sunlight.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can Cordarone be used in older adults?
Yes, Cordarone may be used in older adults, but the potential risks and benefits of treatment may be different in this population.
What should you avoid when taking Cordarone?
You should not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you are using this medicine. Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor.
Can Cordarone be taken on an empty stomach?
You may take this medicine with or without food, but take it the same way each time.
When do you stop Cordarone?
If liver enzyme levels are three times higher than normal, amiodarone should be discontinued unless a patient is at high risk for recurrence of life-threatening arrhythmia.
It's important to purchase Cordarone from verified Canadian pharmacy.