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Where is Dofetilide used?

Dofetilide is used for certain types of serious or possibly fatal irregular heartbeat such as atrial fibrillation/flutter. This is used to restore normal heart rhythm and maintain a regular and steady heartbeat. Treating an irregular heartbeat can decrease the risk of blood clots. Its effect can also reduce your risk of heart attack or stroke.

This prescription is known as an anti-arrhythmic drug. It is with Class III or cardiac action potential duration prolonging. This is available as tablets for oral administration. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved this medication already.

How does Dofetilide work?

Dofetilide shows Vaughan Williams Class III antiarrhythmic activity. The mechanism of action is a blockade of the cardiac ion channel carrying the rapid component of the delayed rectifier potassium current. At concentrations covering, some orders of magnitude, this drug blocks only with no relevant block of the other repolarize potassium currents. At clinically relevant concentrations, this does not affect sodium channels, adrenergic beta-receptors, or adrenergic alpha-receptors.

This medication blocks the activity of certain electrical signals in the heart that can cause an irregular heartbeat.

How is Dofetilide used?

The recommended dosage for this medication is based on your medical condition and response.

This medicine is to be taken by mouth with a full glass of water. It is usually taken twice a day. You may take it with or without food. Use it regularly to get the most benefit of it. To decrease the risk of serious side effects, it is very important to take it exactly as it is prescribed.

You will need to spend at least 3 days in a hospital setting when you first start taking this medicine. This is so your kidney function and heart rhythm can be monitored in case the medicine causes serious side effects. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in smaller or larger amounts or for longer than recommended.

What are the possible side effects of Dofetilide?

  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Back pain
  • Sleep problems
  • Skin rash
  • Cold symptoms (sneezing, stuffy nose, sore throat)

Call for medical help right away if these happen:

  • Fainting
  • Chest pain
  • Severe dizziness
  • Faster or more irregular heartbeat

What are the precautions in taking Dofetilide?

  • Before taking this medication, let your doctor know if you have any medical history or current medications. Tell also your doctor if you have any allergies.
  • Consult your doctor first if you are pregnant or breastfeeding women.
  • Do not drive or do anything that requires your alertness. This drug may make you feel drowsy or dizzy.
  • You should not skip dosages or stop using this medicine suddenly. Stopping suddenly may make your condition worse. Follow the instructions of your doctor about tapering your dose.
  • Let your doctor know if you have a prolonged illness that causes severe vomiting, diarrhea, or heavy sweating. These conditions may cause an electrolyte imbalance, making it risky for you to take this medicine.
  • Your blood pressure will need to be checked often. Your kidney function may also need to be checked with frequent blood tests.