Cordarone is an antiarrhythmic agent that is used to stabilize the heart rhythm when other forms of treatment do not work.
How it is taken
Take Cordarone at the same time of the day and maintain consistency while doing it. If you are taking it with food, then do it every day. If you take it on an empty stomach, then stick to the routine. Grapefruit must be completely avoided while you are taking Cordarone.
Drug Class & Mechanism
Cordarone is an antiarrhythmic. It works by stabilizing the heart rhythm in conditions in which the heart is beating too fast or in an irregular rhythm.
If you miss a dose of Cordarone, then you may take it as soon as you remember and adjust the remaining doses accordingly. However, if it is nearly time for the next dose then you may skip this dose and continue with the regular dosage. Do not take a double dose to make up for the missed dose.
Store it at room temperature (between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C) in an air tight container protecting it from direct exposure to light, heat and moisture. Keep away from pets and children.
Discuss with your doctor about any prior medical condition that you may have including allergies to medicines, food or other substances.
Cordarone may cause drowsiness. These effects get aggravated if you take it with alcohol or certain other medications (sleep aids, muscle relaxers). So, do not drive or perform other potentially hazardous tasks until you know how your body reacts to the drug.
You must not take if you are allergic to any ingredient in it, including iodine, have complete, second degree, third degree, or severe sinoatrial heart block, an abnormally slow heartbeat, or shock due to serious heart problems, or if you have had fainting due to slow heartbeat (except if you have a pacemaker), are taking cisapride, dofetilide, an H1 antagonist (eg, astemizole, loratadine, terfenadine), an HIV protease inhibitor (eg, ritonavir), a phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors (eg, vardenafil), or a streptogramin (eg, dalfopristin, quinupristin).
If you are pregnant or suspect that you are, then stop using and contact your doctor immediately.
Certain drugs can interact with Cordrone and hence, mention clearly to your doctor or pharmacist all medicines, dietary supplements and herbal prescriptions that you are taking.
Cordarone is excreted in breast milk. Avoid breast feeding while using the drug.
Cordarone must be used with extreme caution in children as the safety and effectiveness of the drug have not been confirmed yet.
Long term exposure to the drug may cause a blue-gray discoloration of the skin, particularly of the face and hands. This effect however is reversible and can be cured once the medication is stopped.
Cordarone may make you more sensitive to the sun so please avoid the sun, sunlamps or a tanning booth until you know how your body reacts to the drug. If you cannot avoid going out in the sun for a long while, then wear protective clothing or use a proper sunscreen.
Cordarone stays in your body for weeks or months, even after you are no longer taking it. Therefore, caution is advised not only during treatment, but for several months after treatment with Cordarone has stopped if you are taking any interacting medicines.
It may take a few weeks for the full effects of the drug to start getting noticed.
Carry an ID card that says that you are carrying Cordarone.
Periodic lab tests including electrocardiogram (ECG), chest x-rays, lung tests, liver tests, thyroid tests, and eye exams may be recommended to monitor your health while taking the drug. Ensure that you do not miss any lab tests.
It has been noted that elder patients are more sensitive to the side effects of the drug. They might need a dosage adjustment or special monitoring throughout the treatment.
Some of the common side effects of are abnormal skin sensations (loss of sensation, tingling, numbness, prickling), bitter taste in mouth, blue-green discoloring of skin (especially hands or feet), constipation, decreased sexual interest, dizziness, dry eyes, flushing of the face, general body discomfort, headache, involuntary muscle movements, loss of appetite, nausea, poor coordination, tiredness, trouble sleeping, vomiting. Please contact your doctor if the symptoms persist or become bothersome.
Other severe side effects include severe allergic reactions (rash, hives, difficulty breathing, tightness in the chest, swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue), chest pain, chills, coldness, cough, coughing up blood, dark urine, decreased urination, easy bruising or bleeding, enlarged thyroid gland, eye discomfort, fatigue, fever, irregular pulse, loss of coordination, menstrual changes, muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness (especially with fever or unusual tiredness), nervousness, persistent sore throat, severe dizziness, severe stomach pain, shortness of breath, skin reaction similar to serious sunburn, slow heartbeat, sluggishness, sweating, tingling or numbness of hands or feet, uncontrolled shaking or tremor, unexplained weight change, vision changes (seeing halos, blurred vision, loss of vision), wheezing, worsening of irregular heartbeat, yellowing of the skin or eyes.
You must seek medical attention immediately if any of these side effects occur.