propafenone (Rythmol, Rythmol SR)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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What brand names are available for propafenone?

Rythmol, Rythmol SR

Is propafenone available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for propafenone?

Yes

What are the uses for propafenone?

  • Propafenone is an anti-arrhythmic agent approved for use in patients with life-threatening ventricular arrhythmias, such as ventricular tachycardia.
  • Propafenone is also effective in suppressing the recurrence of atrial fibrillation and supra-ventricular tachycardia once normal sinus rhythm has been restored.
  • Propafenone is at least as effective as any other type I agent in converting atrial fibrillation to normal sinus rhythm.
  • Propafenone is effective in atrial tachycardia, AV nodal tachycardia, and bypass tract tachycardias.

What are the side effects of propafenone?

Common side effects of propafenone are:

Serious side effects of propafenone include:

Because of its beta blocking activity, propafenone must be used with caution in patients with weak heart muscle (congestive heart failure), slow heart rate, any form of heart electrical conduction block, low blood pressure, or asthma.

The most serious side effect of propafenone is the causing of serious life- threatening irregular heart rhythms (ventricular arrhythmias or pro-arrhythmia) or heart block. It is for this reason that propafenone is started and doses increased while patients are hospitalized in a monitored setting.

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What is the dosage for propafenone?

  • The initial dose is 150 mg every 8 hours of immediate release tablets.
  • The dose may be increased at 3 to 4 day intervals to 225 mg every 8 hours and, if needed, to 300 mg every 8 hours.
  • When using extended release capsules the initial dose is 225 mg every 12 hours. The dose may be increased at minimum 5 day intervals to 325 every 12 hours and if necessary to 425 mg every 12 hours.
  • The dose should be reduced in patients with liver failure.
  • Propafenone is given with or without food.

Which drugs or supplements interact with propafenone?

Is propafenone safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

  • Safety and efficacy in pregnant women has not been established.
  • Propafenone is excreted in breast-milk. Mothers should decide whether to stop nursing or discontinue propafenone.

What else should I know about propafenone?

What preparations of propafenone are available?

  • Tablets: 150, 225, and 300 mg.
  • Capsules (extended Release): 225, 325, and 425 mg

How should I keep propafenone stored?

Tablets should be stored at room temperature 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F) in a tightly closed, light-resistant container.

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

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Summary

Propafenone (Rythmol, Rythmol SR) is an anti-arrhythmic agent prescribed for the treatment of life-threatening arrhythmias. Side effects include:

Drug interactions, dosage, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.

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See more info: propafenone on RxList
Reviewed on 9/16/2016
References
Reference: FDA Prescribing Information

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