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What is Alfuzosin?
Alfuzosin is a drug which belongs to a family of drugs called alpha-adrenergic blockers. It is sold under the trade names Uroxatral, Alfusin (made by Cipla) among several other brand names which are sold in various countries.
Alfuzosin medication helps in relaxing the muscles in the neck of prostate and bladder, thereby making urination easier. Alfuzosin is prescribed primarily for men with benign prostatic hyperplasia (enlarge prostate) which makes it harder for them to urinate. This medication thus improves urination in men.
Alfuzosin may also be prescribed for conditions not listed above.
Important Information about Alfuzosin
Alfuzosin (Uroxatral, Alfusin) is not recommended for people who are allergic to it, if you have severe liver disease, or if you are already taking similar medications like doxazosin, prazosin, terazosin, silodosin, or tamsulosin. You should also not take Alfuzosin if you are already taking medications like ketoconazole, itraconazole, or an anti retroviral like ritonavir. You may experience fainting or giddiness in the initial days of starting Alfuzosin, or when you take it after a long time. This may impact some of your activities like driving which require much attention and focus so be careful. Don’t stand upright for a long period, exert yourself more during an exercise, or go outside in hot weather. Don’t get up suddenly from a sitting or lying position otherwise you may feel giddy.
Alfuzosin is known to affect pupils during cataract surgery. Inform your eye surgeon well in advance that you are taking this medication. Don’t stop if without your surgeon’s advice
Certain drugs may interact with Alfuzosin. Let your doctor know about all medications which you use currently.
Alfuzosin should not be taken by women and children strictly.
Before taking Alfuzosin
Women and children should not take Alfuzosin. Before taking Alfuzosin medication (Uroxatral, Alfusin), discuss about all the points mentioned above with your doctor.
Having some pre existing conditions may require you to undergo special tests and dose adjustment before taking Alfuzosin. Let your doctor know if you have any of these conditions: prostate cancer, kidney disease, a personal or family history of Long QT syndrome, angina (chest pain), coronary artery disease, history of low blood pressure, or if you are taking certain anti HIV or anti AIDS medications.
How should I take Alfuzosin?
Take Alfuzosin (Uroxatral, Alfusin) strictly as advised by your doctor. Don’t alter the course of the medication in any way, either by amount or by duration. Your doctor may advise you to change the dose sometimes to ensure proper treatment. All medications come with a patient leaflet. Refer it for more details if you have any doubts, or call your doctor or pharmacist.
Alfuzosin is usually taken once per day, just after a meal. Ensure that you take this medication at the same time every day. Avoid crushing, chewing, or opening an Alfuzosin capsule and swallow it whole. Alfuzosin lowers blood pressure and may lead to dizziness or fainting, especially in the initial period after starting it, or when you restart the medication after a long time. Notify your doctor if you experience severe dizziness, or feel like you may faint.
When you first wake up after taking Alfuzosin, you may feel very dizzy so take care while standing up from a sitting or lying position. You will be required to get your blood pressure and prostate checked at regular intervals. Don’t forget to visit your doctor regularly.
Some factors can lead to low blood pressure while taking Alfuzosin like vomiting, diarrhea, heavy sweating, heart disease, low salt diet, heart disease, or taking diuretics (water pills). Let your doctor know if you have an extended period of illness that causes diarrhea or vomiting.
Always store Alfuzosin in a cool and dry place.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose of Alfuzosin, take it as soon as you remember it. However, skip the missed dose if the time to take the next dose is near. Don’t take extra medication or two doses near to each other to compensate for the missed dose.
What if I overdose?
Get emergency medical attention or call the Doctor immediately if you take an overdose of Alfuzosin and experience serious symptoms which may include severe dizziness and fainting.
What should I avoid while taking Alfuzosin?
Your thinking capability and reflexes may be impacted after taking Alfuzosin (Uroxatral, Alfusin). Be sure not to do an activity that requires greater mental alertness and reflexes like driving. Avoid alcohol as it can increase the likelihood of some side effects of Alfuzosin.
Don’t stand for a long time or exert more during an exercise otherwise you may feel dizzy. Also, while getting up from a sitting and lying position do it slowly and don’t get up suddenly or you may feel dizzy and might fall as well.
Alfuzosin Side Effects
Some serious side effects of Alfuzosin (Uroxatral, Alfusin) are chest pain (new or deteriorating), feeling like you may faint, fever, nausea, stomach pain, appetite loss, dark urine, clay colored stools, jaundice, or painful and prolonged penis erection that can last for 4 hours or longer. Contact your doctor immediately in case of these conditions.
You may also experience some less serious side effects while taking Alfuzosin such as mild dizziness, headache, overall weakness, drowsiness, nausea, diarrhea, back pain, dental problems, blurred vision, sleep problems (insomnia), lower libido, abnormal ejaculation, runny nose, sore throat, or cough.
These are not all the side effects which you may notice due to Alfuzosin intake. There may be others as well.
Alfuzosin Dosing Information
Alfuzosin dosage will be decided by your doctor and may differ from patient to patient. Dosage depends of lot of factors like age, sex, seriousness of the condition among several others. Follow your doctor’s instructions.
Interaction with other drugs
Certain drugs can interact with Alfuzosin (Uroxatral, Alfusin) such as ticlopidine; warfarin; pioglitazone; ropinirole; methimazole; conivaptan; imatinib; cimetidine; isoniazid; some antibiotic drugs such as clarithromycin, dalfopristin/quinupristin, telithromycin, erythromycin, or others; antidepressant medications such as citalopram, desipramine, clomipramine, or others; a nitrate heart medication such as nitroglycerin, isosorbide dinitrate, or isosorbide mononitrate; anti-arrhythmic medicines such as amiodarone, dofetilide, disopyramide, or others; antifungals such as clotrimazole, itraconazole, ketoconazole, or others; anti-malaria drugs such as chloroquine, pyrimethamine, or others; erectile dysfunction medicine such as sildenafil, tadalafil or others; migraine headache medicine such as sumatriptan or zolmitriptan; medicine to stop or treat nausea and vomiting such as dolasetron or ondansetron; heart or blood pressure medication such as diltiazem, nicardipine, verapamil, or others.
The list of drugs above which can interact with Alfuzosin is not a complete one and there may be other drugs which can interact with it. Always consult your doctor before starting a new medication and before stopping or altering the course of any existing ones.