Ranexa

January 31st, 2011 by Helen Scholz

Ranolazine (marketed as Ranexa)

What Is Ranexa?

Ranexa is used to treat adults with chronic chest pain (angina). Ranexa can cause a serious heart beat problem called QT prolongation. Because of this problem, Ranexa should only be used after other angina medicines have not relieved chest pain symptoms. Ranexa should be used with amlodipine (Norvasc), beta blocker medicines, or nitrate medicines. Ranexa does not relieve sudden chest pain.

Chronic chest pain (angina) is caused by not enough blood flow to the heart. Ranexa has not been studied in children.

Who Should Not Take Ranexa?

Do not take Ranexa if you:

* have a heart problem called QT prolongation
* have or had liver problems
* are taking other medicines that also cause QT prolongation. Some of these medicines are:
o antiarrhythmic medicines including quinidine, dofetilide (Tikosyn), sotalol (Betapace)
o erythromycin
o certain antipsychotic medicines including thioridazine (Mellaril), ziprasidone (Geodon)
* are taking medicines or foods that can interact with Ranexa. Some of these include:
o ketoconazole (Nizoral) and certain other antifungal medicines
o diltiazem (Cardiazem, Dilacor, Tiazac)
o verapamil (Calan, Verelan, Covera HS)
o macrolide antibiotics
o HIV protease inhibitors
o grapefruit juice or grapefruit containing products

What Are The Risks?

The following are the major potential risks and side effects of Ranexa therapy. However, this list is not complete.

The following are the major possible risks and side effects of Ranexa therapy:

* QT prolongation. Ranexa may cause this serious heart beat problem which can lead to sudden death.
* dizziness and lightheadedness. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how Ranexa affects you. Call your healthcare professional if you have heart beat problems (palpitations) or fainting spells.
* Some common side effects with Ranexa include:
o headache
o constipations
o nausea

What Should I Tell My Healthcare Professional?

Before you start taking Ranexa, tell your healthcare professional if you:

* have or had liver problems

* have or had kidney problems
* have or had heart problems
* have a medical condition that may affect the heart, such as low blood potassium (hypokalemia)
* are trying to become pregnant, are already pregnant, or are breast-feeding

Can Other Medicines Or Food Affect Ranexa?

See âEURoeWho should not take Ranexa?âEUR for more information. Other medicines not listed in that section can also interact with Ranexa including:

*

digoxin (Lanoxin, Lanoxicaps)
*

simvastatin (Zocor)
*

ritonavir (Norvir)
*

cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Restasis, Sandimmune)
*

antidepressant medicines
*

antipsychotic medicines

Tell your healthcare professional about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of them with you to show your healthcare professional.
How Should I Take Ranexa?

* Take Ranexa with or without meals.
* Swallow Ranexa whole. Do not crush, break or chew the tablets.
* If you miss a dose of Ranexa, wait until the next scheduled dose and get back on schedule with your usual dose. Do not take more than your usual dose at any time, even if you have missed doses.