Flecainide

Pronunciation

Generic Name: flecainide (fle-KAY-nide)
Brand Name: Tambocor

Flecainide sometimes produces new irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias), which can be life-threatening.


Flecainide is used for:

Treating and preventing various types of irregular heartbeat that lead to life-threatening heart rhythm disturbances.

Flecainide is an antiarrhythmic. It works by stabilizing the heart rhythm when the heart is beating too fast or in an irregular rhythm.

Do NOT use flecainide if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in flecainide
  • you have severe heart problems (eg, certain types of heart blocks or shock) or a history of severe heart problems
  • you are taking an HIV protease inhibitor (eg, ritonavir)

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using flecainide:

Some medical conditions may interact with flecainide. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have heart problems (eg, congestive heart failure, heart attack, sick sinus syndrome) or a history of heart problems
  • if you have severe kidney or liver problems
  • if you have abnormal potassium blood levels

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with flecainide. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Calcium channel blockers (eg, nifedipine, verapamil), cimetidine, HIV protease inhibitors (eg, ritonavir), or serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (eg, duloxetine) because they may increase the risk of flecainide's side effects, including heart problems, blood problems, or seizures, may be increased
  • Antiarrhythmics (eg, amiodarone, quinidine, disopyramide), arsenic, beta-blockers (eg, propranolol, sotalol), droperidol, pimozide, serotonin receptor antagonists (eg, dolasetron), or ziprasidone because the risk of side effects, such as irregular heartbeat or other heart problems, may be increased
  • Digoxin because the risk of its side effects may be increased by flecainide

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if flecainide may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use flecainide:

Use flecainide as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take flecainide by mouth with or without food.
  • The initial dose of flecainide will be given by a qualified health care provider in a medical setting.
  • If you miss a dose of flecainide, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use flecainide.

Important safety information:

  • Flecainide may cause dizziness, blurred vision, or lightheadedness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use flecainide with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take flecainide before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Do not suddenly stop taking flecainide without checking with your doctor.
  • LAB TESTS may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Flecainide should not be used in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using flecainide while you are pregnant. Flecainide is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you are using flecainide, check with your doctor. Discuss the risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of flecainide:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Blurred vision; constipation; difficulty focusing; dizziness; faintness; headache; nausea; seeing spots; stomach discomfort; tiredness; unsteadiness; weakness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest pain; difficulty breathing; fainting; fast heartbeat; heart attack; life-threatening irregular heartbeat; lightheadedness; pounding in the chest; seizures; tremor; yellowing of the skin or eyes.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include fainting; nausea; seizures; slow heartbeat; vomiting.

Proper storage of flecainide:

Store flecainide at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep flecainide out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about flecainide, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Flecainide is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take flecainide or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about flecainide. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to flecainide. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using flecainide.

Issue Date: December 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.4.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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