Oral Ivabradine is used to manage stable angina pectoris by decreasing the heart rate. It is usually prescribed to patients who have worsening heart failure but have sinus rhythm.
Aside from symptomatic management of stable angina pectoris, ivabradine is also used to treat inappropriate sinus tachycardia. Using ivabradine decreases the risk of hospitalization. This particular medication is only available with a physician’s order. It is available in tablet form.
2 What to Know Before Using
Discuss the pros and cons of using oral ivabradine with your physician before beginning treatment.
There are several factors you need to consider before deciding to use this medication.
Make sure you are not allergic to ivabradine or any of its components. You should also inform your healthcare team if you have allergies to certain foods, dyes, preservatives, and/or animals.
Be aware of age-related factors that may influence the effectiveness of ivabradine. However, research has not shown enough evidence that the efficacy of this medication is limited in pediatric or geriatric patients.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits involved.
Ivabradine should not be used simultaneously with the following: amifampridine, atazanavir, bepridil, boceprevir, cisapride, clarithromycin, delavirdine, dronedarone, fluconazole, idelalisib, imatinib, indinavir, itraconazole, ketoconazole, mesoridazine, nefazodone, nelfinavir, pimozide, ritonavir, telaprevir, thioridazine, and ziprasidone, among others. This is not a complete list. Talk to your doctor if you want a more detailed list of medications. Sometimes, drugs that are not usually taken simultaneously with ivabradine must be used. In this case, your doctor can change the dosing or timing.
When taking ivabradine, always follow your doctor’s instructions. Reading the medication guide that comes with it is also helpful.
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice can decrease the amount of ivabradine that is absorbed by the body. It is, therefore, important that you avoid these while using this medication.
As for dosing and timing, this varies from individual to individual, so follow the instructions that were given to you by your physician and do not copy someone else’s routine. This may have serious effects on your health.
Dosing and timing for adults is usually 5 mg twice a day and can be increased to not more than 7.5 mg twice a day. The dosing and timing for children is to be determined by the physician.
If you miss your dose, take it when you remember. But if the next timing is close, skip it all together and resume the normal schedule. Double dosing can have negative consequences.
Store ivabradine in a sealed container and keep it away from children’s reach, direct sun light and moisture. Throw away expired medications.
4 Precautions To Take
Go to your regular checkups so that your doctor can accurately monitor your progress and check for side effects.
Using ivabradine while pregnant can cause harm to the unborn child. So if you are pregnant, tell your doctor. If you are not, use effective birth control methods while you are on this medication. Inform your physician immediately if you become pregnant while on ivabradine treatment.
As mentioned earlier, there are drugs that should not be used simultaneously with ivabradine since doing so may cause adverse effects. For emphasis, again, these are clarithromycin (Biaxin®), ketoconazole (Nizoral®), itraconazole (Sporanox®), nefazodone (Serzone®), telithromycin (Ketek®), or nelfinavir (Viracept®).
It is essential that you monitor your heart rate because ivabradine can make you prone to atrial fibrillation. If you experience irregular heartbeat, fainting, dizziness, or trouble breathing while on this treatment, inform your physician immediately.
This medication can also cause temporary visual brightness, which is called luminous phenomena. Extra caution should be exercised when driving or operating heavy machinery.
Check with your doctor first before using any over-the-counter medication.
5 Potential Side Effects
Ivabradine has expected and adverse effects.
Contact your physician immediately if you experience blurry vision, chest pain, dizziness, fainting, increased/decreased heart rate, headache, lightheadedness, nervousness, pounding in the ears, confusion, facial swelling, unusual weakness, sweating, and shortness of breath.
Other effects of ivabradine can be resolved without treatment. These include luminous phenomena, double vision, feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings, flushing or redness of the skin, skin irritation, and unusually warm skin.
If you experience signs and symptoms that are not mentioned above, inform your doctor as soon as possible.
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