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Heart Disease Health Center

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Heart Disease and Treatment With Digoxin

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If you have heart disease, Digoxin is a medication that helps an injured or weakened heart work better to send blood through the body. It strengthens the force of the heart muscle's contractions, slows the heart rate, and improves blood circulation.

Two common brands of digoxin are Lanoxin and Lanoxicaps. A variety called digitoxin is sold under the brand name Crystodigin.

Recommended Related to Heart Disease

Alcohol and Heart Disease

Can you drink if you have heart disease? Moderate drinking should be OK, if your doctor approves, but you shouldn't count on alcohol to be a major part of your heart health plan. "If you don’t drink alcohol now, there is no reason to start,” says Mark Urman, MD, a cardiologist at Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute in Los Angeles. It's true that there have been studies linking drinking small amounts of alcohol -- no more than two drinks a day for men and one drink a day for women -- to better heart health...

Read the Alcohol and Heart Disease article > >

Why Do I Need to Take Digoxin?

Digoxin is prescribed to treat:

How Should I Take Digoxin?

Digoxin is usually taken once a day, especially in the elderly and those with kidney problems. Try to take this medication at the same time every day. Follow the label directions on how often to take it. The time allowed between doses and how long you need to take it will depend on your condition. You may have to take this medication for many years, possibly for the rest of your life.

While taking this medication, your doctor may tell you to check your pulse daily. He or she will tell you how rapid your pulse should be. If your pulse is slower than recommended, contact your doctor about taking digoxin that day.

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory so your response to the drug can be watched.

Digoxin may cause drowsiness. Do not drive a car or use machinery until you know how this medicine affects you.

What Are the Side Effects of Digoxin?

If you have any of the following side effects from digoxin, contact your doctor right away:

These side effects could mean that your dose needs to be changed. Once you and your doctor have found the correct dose, you usually will not have side effects if you take digoxin exactly as prescribed.

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