9. Cardiovascular Drugs – i

Drug Interactions

Many commonly used drugs interact with digitalis compounds. The Class IA antiarrhythmic, quinidine, competes with digoxin for binding sites and depresses renal clearance of digoxin.

Similar interactions occur with calcium-channel blockers and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. 

 Diuretics can indirectly interact with digoxin because of their potential for decreasing plasma potassium levels (i.e., producing hypokalemia). 

Therapeutic Uses

Therapeutic Uses of Digitalis Compounds

Heart Failure

↑ inotropy

↑ ejection fraction

↓ preload

↓ pulmonary congestion/edema

Arrhythmias

↓ AV nodal conduction

(parasympathomimetic effect)

↓ ventricular rate in atrial flutter

and fibrillation

Heart 

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