PMID: 2985676May 1, 1985

Pharmacokinetic interactions between digoxin and other drugs

Journal of the American College of Cardiology
F I Marcus

Abstract

Drug interactions with digoxin are important because of this agent's narrow therapeutic index. Among the drugs that can decrease digoxin bioavailability are cholestyramine, antacid gels, kaolin-pectate, certain antimicrobial drugs and cancer chemotherapeutic agents. In selected patients, antibiotics may enhance digoxin bioavailability by eliminating intestinal flora that metabolize digoxin. Antiarrhythmic drugs, such as quinidine and amiodarone, can markedly increase steady state serum digoxin levels. Certain calcium channel blocking drugs, particularly verapamil, have a similar effect. Potassium-sparing diuretic drugs, such as spironolactone, can alter digoxin pharmacokinetics. Indomethacin may decrease renal excretion of digoxin in preterm infants. Finally, rifampin, an antibiotic used in the treatment of tuberculosis, may lower steady state serum digoxin levels in patients with severe renal disease. Physicians must maintain constant vigilance whenever medications are added to or withdrawn from a therapeutic regimen that includes digoxin.

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