Amiodarone Meds

Hi all. Not posted for a while but have kept reading your posts. I would like to ask anyone*s opinion on Amiodarone tablets .I have been on 200mg. for 2years now. AF has been under control with this med but I am having side effect from the sun (sunburnt in February). I have read that no one should be on this med for more than 6 months. Would be grateful for any advice. As I am a carer for my husband I may not be able to stay so I give my thanks to you all now.

21 Replies

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  • I have been on Amiodorone for about seven months now and am experiencing side effects - hypothyroidism, hypertension and bradycardia I came of it a month ago and am just beginning to feel better I have not been given anything to replace it The Cardiologist prescribed the drug and my GP has said that it should only be taken for six months so like you am confused

  • My first cardioversion was unsuccessful and at the checkup the Registrar asked me why I was not taking Amiodarone!!! Anyway he prescribed it for me and said that after a few weeks they would try again as he thought it would make a difference. The second op was successful and that was 4 years ago. Almost immediately afterwards I was taken off Amiodarone - and I understood it was not for long term use, so I would make enquiries as to why you are still on it - perhaps there is an alternative without such drastic side effects.

    All good wishes,

    Ruuth

  • I was put on Amiodarane in December last after it was deemed Arythmol wasn't effective. Well Amiodarone has stopped my AF. Like yourself, it looks as though I have Photosensitivity,

    plus I am fair skinned anyway.

  • I have twice been prescribed it prior to cardioversions. Within short time it gave me a tremor, floaters in my eyes and caused deposits on my cornea. The second time it also affected my equilibrium in that small turning movements caused balance problems. It is a terrible drug but very effective.

    You can Google the history of amiodarone.

  • I was put on Aminodarone two weeks ago after suffering atrial tachycardia following my ablation and a cardioversion which didn't work. Both my consultant and the specialist nurse said that they recommend only taking this medication for one year. I have been put on it for a month and it has put my heart back into normal sinus rhythm. They were both very clear about not sitting in the sun/covering up whilst taking it and also to continue to do that for several weeks after you stop taking the medication.

    I am hoping that when I stop taking the tablets it will have done its job and everything will be ok.

    I would recommend that you go back to your consultant about the length of time you have been on this medication.

    Hope you manage to get it sorted out.

  • Hi. Over the past few years I have been on Amioderone 3 times for 2 year periods each time. I never had any side effects other than the photosensitivty. Personally I found it to be a wonderful drug for ME. Other people will differ. I had nothing but serious problems with other meds, Flecainide, Propofenone, Digoxin... Fortunately after my third ablation, 3 years ago, I don't need any meds other than anticoags.

    At the time I was told 1-2 years was the maximum.

    Different people, different scenarios.

    Phil

  • I've taken this drug in the past on two separate occasions, for about 6-12 months each time. It didn't halt my AF and mucked up my thyroid function (hypothyroid) and I still have tests to check my thyroid function now.

    However, I knew of someone who had AF and took it for 8 years and wasn't checked once in any way by his GP/surgery during that time, somehow he was forgotten by the medical profession. He didn't read the instruction leaflet and so was out in the sun without being aware of what it could do and was totally unaware of the dangers of that drug. He had what I would have called a 'ruddy' complexion - always looked suntanned and fit to me. Anyway, he was taken off the drug and had an ablation and all was okayish though he still had AF.

    It must be about two years ago now that he died with something totally unconnected to AF, pneumonia. I'm guessing his age must have been late 60's.

    We all tend to be hung up about our AF and convinced, we'll either have a stroke or die because of it. I've certainly thought that when having a particularly bad attack. Looking at the wider picture it's just as likely to be something else that causes our death. Yes, we all have to die one day and we can't escape it, it's natural. We will all die of something, but AF is not always the culprit. So, if we can (and I appreciate some can't), lets live our lives as best we can why we have the opportunity and not let AF rule our lives if possible.

    Oh and don't take Amiodarone, or any other pill come to that if it gives you side effects that outweigh the symptoms of your AF.

    Wishing you all well.

    Jean

  • If you go onto Amiodarone there should be a care plan put in place between the GP and the local hospital. You should have 6 monthly checks and an annual review. Side effects are well documented. Perhaps the least well known is that it can stiffen the walls of the lungs - so if you develop a cough get it checked out.

    Ian

  • Hi Yorkie, I was started on Amiodarone more than twelve years ago, after suffering a stroke, which of course is a consequence of A/F, and am still on it. My Heart Specialist told me about four years ago that I MUST change to a long unobtainable USA med called Dronedarone, as Amiodarone can cause Pneumonosis, removing the elasticity from the lung tissue, which it has in my case. Wonderful new Dronedarone was to be the only option, but didn't work at all in my case, and during trials landed me a few times in A&E. So, I am currently 77, and almost unable to breathe, I very much hope in your case that, when the time comes, Dronedarone will work for you. AND YES, DO NOT SUNBATHE.

  • Well known side effects listed above. Other drugs are available but may not be as effective. However, not as toxic either! Speak to you EP.

  • I am also on Amiodorone, put on before my cardioversion in January still on it, but Cardiologist has halved my dose to 100mg and I seem to be okay on that dose, ask if you can reduce the dose.

  • I have been on amiodarone for 1.5 years. I take 100 mg 5 days per week with no side effects evident from annual checkup. It has stopped my AF completely.

  • This is going to sound controversial but I believe age is a factor with Amiodarone. I believe the drug is a last resort before ablation but, at what point do they look at the factors surrounding the decision to carry out an ablation. They knew that I could not take Amiodarone for potentially 30 years so an ablation was offered. I was on Amiodarone for close to a year with a break in between......it is toxic.

  • I was put on Amiodarone a couple of months prior to my ablation - as I was on a trial at Barts they said I had to take it although the consultant who prescribed it initially (at another hospital) said that about 6 months was the maximum time or there would be severe side effects and he did warn me about the possibility of sunburns,

    When I had my ablation I was told I needed to carry on with the drug until my follow up appointment 3 months after; I queried this with the surgeon and she said not to worry about it - it was OK and that majority of people who took it were absolutely fine with it even for very long periods and only a very small number had side effects and that it was a great drug for AF. I must say, not sure if it is the Amiodarone of the ablation (or both) after the terrible time after the procedure when I almost died (previous post) I now feel great and AF seems to be under control for the moment (fingers and toes X here). It is great to have got rid of that troupe of flamenco dancers in my chest!

    But I guess it is different strokes for different folks (no pun intended here)

  • I was born with Wolf Parkinson White Syndrome in 1938 and started to take 200mg amiodorone in 1988. Had overactive thyroid so dose reduced to 100mg and also had meds for the thyroid until it returned to normal. Carried on with 100mg daily until I had an ablation in 1991 to get rid of the WPW.Ceased all medication until got PAF in 2010. While on amiod I had to have annual xrays,as the drug can cause lung lesions and 6 monthly eye exams re the crystals. The drug is very toxic ,but it may have improved since 1991.You will have to be guided by your medical adviser.

  • i've been on Amiodarone for nearly year and half, had Ablation 4 months ago still heart not settled down yet, Desperate to come off it but consultant said im to stay on it till my review in july. told the consultant got thyroid trouble and pertuatry gland trouble and had brain scan, but been told to stay on it, not sure what to do got 6 more weeks on it, not sure with my head will take 6 more weeks, no thyroid trouble before i took Amiodarone, would rather have A F than take it any longer

  • Photosensitivity, thyroid problems, scratches on my cornea. Still taking thyroid medication 6 years after Amiodarone was discontinued. Eyes improved within a year and I now need weaker glasses. Now on Bisoprolol and Digoxin, which don't seem to have any side effects.

  • I was on amiodarone for over a year. Asked gp if I could come off it and he said to ask ep. So when I got an appointment asked. The ep gave me the pros and cons and I just asked him if I was his wife what would he do. He took me off amiodarone straight away. One of his main issues is the potential damage it does to the lungs.

  • I was put on Amiodarone when my AF was so bad that I spent a night in bed at hospital. Was on it for 10 months before I saw a heart specialist, (the time it took then,back in 2004), who took me off it and put me on Flecainide instead. I hated Amiodarone, but it's fine for some people. There isn't a "standard" human body which reacts to drugs always in the same way. The side effects I had were chest and arm pains, and a feeling of panic. I gave up driving on motorways because I had no confidence in overtaking other vehicles. In the 10 months I was taking it, I was blue-lighted to hospital 3 times.

  • I've had Amiodarone by IV and the related Dronedaone orally. They resulted in a mass in both lungs with near fatal consequences.

    Two years seems a long time to be on Amiodarone. Is your liver function and eyesight being checked regularly?

  • After a NHS double bypass in 2013 I was in persistent AFIB, misdiagnosed as tachycardia for six months until AFIB was correctly diagnosed and I received a successful cardioversion. Because of the misdiagnosis I was put on Amiodorone which made me feel very ill. I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole now.

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