In this session, we will be discussing the consumer medication information for digoxin, trade name LanoxinTM.
What it’s for & How to take
Digoxin is used to control abnormal heartbeats and to treat heart failure. This medication works by helping your heart beat stronger and more regular.
Digoxin is usually taken once daily. This medication may be taken with or without food; however, foods that are high in fiber may block digoxin from working. Wait at least 2 hours before or after taking this medication before you eat any food high in fiber.
Do not stop taking this medication or change the dose without talking to your doctor. If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of your next dose, skip it and continue with your normal dose time. Do not take a double dose to make up the missed dose.
Call your doctor if your condition is not improving after starting this medication.
Warnings & Cautions
- Rarely, digoxin may cause your heart to beat fast and unsteady. If you feel any severe dizziness or feel like your heart is racing or beating too fast, get medical help right away.
- The elderly may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication, especially the drowsiness and dizziness. The chances of loss of balance and falling are increased. Adults over 65 years of age usually have a lower dose of digoxin.
- This medication is sometimes used in infants and children. Infants and children may be much more likely to have side effects from this medication, especially the abnormal heartbeats. Talk about this with your child’s doctor.
- Talk with your doctor about the risks of taking this medication if you are pregnant, might become pregnant or are breastfeeding.
Interactions & Side Effects
- Tell your pharmacist or doctor all your medication allergies so they may determine if digoxin is safe for you to take.
- Avoid dangerous drug interactions. Some medications, such as water pills, may increase the chance of having an abnormal heartbeat. Tell your pharmacist or doctor all the other medication you are taking, including over the counter supplements, even if you don’t take them very often.
- Ask your doctor if this medication is safe to take with your current health conditions. Tell your doctor if you have a history of heart, liver, kidney or thyroid disease or if you have a pacemaker in your heart.
- While taking digoxin, you may feel some nausea, loss of appetite, dizziness, headache, anxiety, diarrhea or constipation. If these or any other unwanted side effects persist, contact your doctor or pharmacist to talk about it with them.
- Call your doctor right away if you have any severe vomiting, yellowing of your eyes, swelling in the ankles, shortness of breath or signs of infection such as a fever or sore throat.
- Call emergency 911 if you have any symptoms of a heart attack such as chest and left arm pain, shortness of breath and sweating or if you have symptoms of a stroke such as weakness on one side of your body, slurred speech, sudden vision changes, and confusion.
If you have any questions about what you have heard, contact your pharmacist or doctor. This session does not include all the potential interactions or side effects that this medication may cause. Ask your pharmacist how your medication should be stored and how you should dispose of it when you are done taking it. Do not share your medication with anyone, ever. Remember, this is not meant to replace your counseling session with your pharmacist. In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222.