Generic Name: dalfampridine (dal FAM pri deen)
Brand Names: Ampyra
What is Ampyra?
Ampyra (dalfampridine) is a potassium channel blocker.
Ampyra is used to improve walking in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). Dalfampridine produced an increase in walking speed in clinical trials. Exactly how it works is not known. It is thought to increase nerve function.
Ampyra may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
You should not use Ampyra if you are allergic to dalfampridine, or if you have moderate to severe kidney disease, if you have ever had a seizure (convulsions), or if you are also taking another multiple sclerosis drug called Fampridine.
Before you take Ampyra, tell your doctor if you have kidney disease.
High doses of Ampyra may increase your risk of seizure. Do not take more than 2 tablets in a 24-hour period. Do not use a tablet that has been broken or crushed. A broken tablet can release too much of the drug at one time.
Stop taking Ampyra and call your doctor at once if you a seizure, pain or burning when you urinate, problems with your balance, numbness or tingly feeling, or a relapse of your MS symptoms.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use Ampyra if you are allergic to dalfampridine, or if you have:
moderate to severe kidney disease;
if you have ever had a seizure (convulsions); or
if you are also taking another MS drug called Fampridine (4-aminopyridine).
To make sure you can safely take Ampyra, tell your doctor if you have kidney disease.
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether Ampyra will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using Ampyra. It is not known whether dalfampridine passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while you are using Ampyra. Do not give this medication to anyone under 18 years old without the advice of a doctor.
See also: Ampyra pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)
How should I take Ampyra?
Take Ampyra exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. High doses of Ampyra may increase your risk of seizure. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Ampyra is usually taken once every 12 hours. Follow your doctor's instructions.
Do not take more than 2 tablets in a 24-hour period.
Ampyra may be taken with or without food.
Do not crush, chew, or break an extended-release tablet. Swallow it whole. Do not dissolve the tablet in liquid. Breaking or dissolving the pill may cause too much of the drug to be released at one time. Do not use a Ampyra tablet that has been accidentally crushed or broken. This can increase your risk of having a seizure.
To be sure this medication is not causing harmful effects, your kidney function may need to be checked with frequent blood tests. Visit your doctor regularly.
Store Ampyra at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Throw away any leftover medicine after the expiration date on the label has passed.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra Ampyra to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Ampyra overdose can cause confusion, problems with thinking or memory, tremors, sweating, or seizures.
What should I avoid?
Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
Ampyra side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Ampyra: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop taking Ampyra and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
pain or burning when you urinate;
problems with balance;
numbness, burning pain, or tingly feeling;
relapse or worsening of MS symptoms;
Less serious Ampyra side effects may include:
sleep problems (insomnia);
nausea, constipation, upset stomach;
stuffy nose, sinus pain, sore throat; or
This is not a complete list of Ampyra side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Ampyra side effects (in more detail)
What other drugs will affect Ampyra?
There may be other drugs that can interact with Ampyra. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.
Where can I get more information?
- Your pharmacist can provide more information about Ampyra.
- Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
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