Eplerenone review

Eplerenone is a drug classified as an aldosterone antagonist mainly used in part of chronic heart failure management. This drug is analogous to spironolactione, however it may be more specific for the mineralocorticoid receptor. Eplerenone is specifically marketed to reduce the risk of cardiovascular failure following myocardial infarction.

Eplerenone whose brand name is Inspra, may be used alone or in conjunction with other medicines to treat ailments of high blood pressure. The main task of eplerenone is to block the chemical aldosterone in the body and in turn, lowers the amount of sodium and water the body can retain. This in turn lowers high blood pressure, which is a prevailing factor in strokes, heart attacks and most kidney problems. Eplerenone is used to treat congestive heart failure that follows right after a heart attack.

Eplerenone is taken orally once or twice a day. It is available in 25 mg or 50 mg tablets. Its inactive ingredients include: lactose, croscarmellose sodium, sodium lauryl sulfate, microcrystalline cellulose, magnesium stearate, talc, polyethylene glycol, iron oxide yellow, iron oxide red, titanium dioxide and polysorbate 80.

Eplerenone may be taken with or without food. The dosage of eplerenone is based on the illness treated and the body’s response to the kind of therapy. The full effects of eplerenone may take for up to 4 weeks before being felt by the body’s blood pressure.

The most common adverse side effects of the drug include hyperkalemia, decrease in renal function, hypotension, increased creatinine concentration, and dizziness.

Commonly reported side effects may also include headaches, diarrhea, stomach pain and flu-like symptoms manifested by fever, chills and unusual tiredness. More serious, yet highly unlikely side effects are reported to occur such as abnormal vaginal bleeding, sore breasts in males, mood changes and even chest pain. If these side effects do occur, a doctor must be contacted immediately.

Eplerenone has been found out to raise the potassium levels in the blood. High potassium levels can lead to serious and even fatal heart rhythms.

Eplerenone is contraindicated with patients suffering from any of the following: hyperkalemia, severe hepatic impairment (conditions such as Child-Pugh score C) and severe renal impairment (levels of creatinine CI is less than 30 mL/min).

Concomitant use of itraconazole, ketoconazole and other potassium-sparing diuretics has been reported to be contraindicated with eplerenone. Drugs that increase the levels of potassium may increase the risk of the patient getting hyperkalemia in association with eplerenone therapy. Eplerenone is also contraindicated with the concomitant use of drugs that inhibits the enzyme CYP3A4.

Eplerenone should not be used with the following drugs as serious interactions may occur: antifungal drugs such as ketoconazole and intraconazole, potassium supplements such as spironolactone and triamterene, certain antibiotics such as clarithromycin and certain protease inhibitors such as nelfinavir and ritonavir.

Prior to eplerenone administration, a detailed medical history must be reported to the physician to check for any allergies to the drug or any other drug allergies. Eplerenone is not to be sued by patients with certain medical conditions such as high potassium levels in the blood stream (hyperkalemia), severe kidney impairment and liver failure. Caution must be exercised for patients with low levels of sodium, diabetic patients, and heart diseases.

Activities such as driving and use of machinery, or any other activity that requires focus and attention should be avoided when taking eplerenone since this drug has been reported to make the user dizzy. Alcoholic beverages must be avoided as it increases the risk of dizziness. Children and the elderly may have more sensitive reactions to the drugs, hence, caution is exercised when administering the drug to their group.

Pregnant women should only use this drug when absolutely needed. The potential benefits of the drug must be weighed against the risk it may give to the fetus. It is not recommended to breast feed during eplerenone therapy.

Eplerenone has the following structural formula:

Chemical structure of eplerenone

• Molecular formula of eplerenone is C24H30O6
Eplerenone available : 25mg tablets and 50mg tablets

Brand name(s): Epoxymexrenone

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