Procainamide

Procainamide

Properties

This medicine contains procainamide as active ingredient. It is a drug belonging to the class of antiarrhythmic medicines, known to slow the rate at which nerve impulses are carried through the heart muscles cells, reducing the response of the heart muscle to these impulses. This medicine is often prescribed for people who do not respond to other antiarrhythmic drugs.

Prescribed for

The medicine is prescribed for arrhythmias such as:

•   Ventricular premature beats

•   Ventricular tachycardia

•   Ventricular fibrillation

Cautions and Warnings

The drug can worsen heart failure or trigger severely low blood pressure, it also may worsen a heart block.

Because of its anticholinergic effects, men with a severe prostate condition and people who have glaucoma, myasthenia gravis, or severe difficulty urinating should use this medicine with  caution.

People with potassium levels that are out of the normal range must correct this imbalance before starting this  medication.

Seniors, especially those with liver or kidney disease, are more sensitive to the effects of this drug.

The medicine may cause symptoms of low blood sugar:

•   Anxiety

•   Cold sweats

•   Drowsiness

•   Excessive hunger

•   Nausea

•   Nervousness

•   Rapid pulse

•   Unusual weakness

•   Tiredness

•   Cool, pale skin

If this happens to you, eat some chocolate, candy, or other high-sugar food, and call your doctor at once.

Before using this medicine

Before you use this medicine check with your doctor, or pharmacist:

•   if you ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medication

•   if you are pregnant or intend to become pregnant

•   if you are breast-feeding an infant

•   if you are suffering from heart failure

•   if you have a liver disorder

•   if you suffer a kidney disorder

•   if you have low blood pressure

Treatment

This medication is used for treatment of disorders of the heart rhythm.

Usual dosage

The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may  prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor’s  approval.

The starting dose for adults is 1000 mg a day in divided doses. The maintenance dosage is 23 mg per lb. of body weight, in doses every 3 hours around the clock, adjusted according to individual needs.

Side effects

Along with the needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Possible side effects include:

•   Dry mouth

•   Urinary difficulty

•   Constipation

•   Blurred vision

•   Dry eyes, nose, and throat

•   Frequent urination

•   Nausea

•   Generalized aches and pains

•   Heart failure

•   Low blood pressure

Overdose

Major symptoms of an overdose are:

•   Breathing difficulties

•   Abnormal heart rhythms

•   Unconsciousness

•   Collapse

Call a doctor or hospital emergency room for  instructions.

Interactions

The medicine may interact with various other drugs. The medicine may increase the amount of digoxin in your blood, though the amount of the increase is not likely to affect your heart.

Be sure to tell your doctor about any medications you are currently taking.

Driving or hazardous work

Avoid if you feel dizzy. Otherwise, no problems expected.

Storage

Tablets should be stored at room temperature; store away from heat and direct light. Keep out of reach of children, since overdose may be dangerous in children.

KNOWLEDGE BASE
About Genomic Medicine UK

Genomic Medicine UK is the home of comprehensive genomic testing in London. Our consultant medical doctors work tirelessly to provide the highest standards of medical laboratory testing for personalised medical treatments, genomic risk assessments for common diseases and genomic risk assessment for cancers at an affordable cost for everybody. We use state-of-the-art modern technologies of next-generation sequencing and DNA chip microarray to provide all of our patients and partner doctors with a reliable, evidence-based, thorough and valuable medical service.

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