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Rilutek (generically known as riluzole) is a medication used to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a progressive neurological disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Riluzole is in a class of medications called benzothiazoles. It works by reducing the levels of a neurotransmitter called glutamate in the brain, which is believed to contribute to the death of nerve cells in ALS.
Uses and Dosage
Rilutek is available as a capsule-shaped, white, film-coated tablet for oral administration containing 50 mg of riluzole and should take Riluzole tablets by mouth. It is usually taken twice a day, every 12 hours, and should be taken at the same times each day, usually in the morning and evening. The recommended dosage of Rilutek for ALS is 50 mg twice daily, taken at least one hour before or two hours after a meal.
For the best results, take it on an empty stomach, 1 hour before or 2 hours after meals. Follow the instructions on the prescription label carefully and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any parts you do not understand. Take Riluzole exactly as directed, and do not take more or less than prescribed, or take it more often than directed by your doctor.
Common Side Effects of Rilutek (Riluzole):
- Decreased lung function
- Loss of appetite
- Muscle stiffness
- Numbness or tingly feeling in or around your mouth
- Runny nose
- Spinning sensation
- Stomach pain
Serious Side Effects of Rilutek (Riluzole):
- Black, tarry, or stools
- Decreased frequency or amount of urine
- Difficult breathing
- Increased thirst
- Pale skin
- Swelling of the face, fingers, or lower legs
- Ulcers, sores, or white spots in the mouth
- Unusual bleeding or bruising
- Weight gain
Form and Strength
Rilutek (Riluzole) is available in the following forms and strength:
- 50 mg
- 50 mg
- Rilutek can cause liver problems, so it is important to monitor liver function carefully while taking this medication. Caution should be exercised when using Rilutek in patients with existing liver disease or on medications that affect liver function.
- Rilutek may interact with other medications, including certain antidepressants, antihistamines, and blood thinners. Patients should inform their doctor about all medications they are taking before starting Rilutek.
- The safety of Rilutek during pregnancy and breastfeeding has not been established. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should consult with their doctor before taking Rilutek.
- Rilutek may cause side effects, including dizziness, nausea, and fatigue. Patients should report any side effects to their doctor.
- Elderly patients may have age-related liver problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for Rilutek.
- Patients who are allergic to Rilutek or any of its components should not take this medication.
- Rilutek has been associated with rare cases of mental health and behavioral changes, including depression, suicidal thoughts, and aggression. Patients should report any changes in mood or behavior to their doctor immediately.
- Rilutek can cause dizziness and fatigue, which may impair a patient's ability to drive or operate machinery. Patients should exercise caution when performing tasks that require alertness.
- Rilutek is primarily eliminated through the kidneys, so patients with renal impairment may require a dosage adjustment or close monitoring while taking this medication.
- Taking more than the prescribed amount of Rilutek can cause overdose symptoms such as seizures and liver damage. In case of overdose, patients should seek medical attention immediately.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can Rilutek cure ALS?
No, Rilutek cannot cure ALS, but it has been shown to slow down the progression of the disease and prolong survival.
Can Rilutek be used in children?
The safety and efficacy of Rilutek has not been established in children under 18 years of age.
How should I take Rilutek?
Rilutek should be taken exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. It is typically taken twice a day, either with or without food.
Can Rilutek be taken with other medications?
Rilutek may interact with other medications, so it is important to inform your healthcare provider of all the medications you are taking before starting treatment with Rilutek.
It's important to purchase Rilutek from verified Canadian pharmacy.