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All about: Mexiletine

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Generic Name: Mexiletine (mex-IL-e-teen)
Brand Name: Mexitil

Because Mexiletine may cause an irregular heartbeat in some patients, it should only be used to treat life-threatening irregular heartbeat.


Mexiletine is used for:

Treating certain types of life-threatening irregular heartbeat.

Mexiletine is an antiarrhythmic. It works by stabilizing the heart rhythm, which helps keep the heart from beating too fast or in an irregular rhythm.

Do NOT use Mexiletine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Mexiletine
  • you have cardiogenic shock or second- or third-degree atrioventricular (AV) block and do not have a pacemaker

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Mexiletine :

Some medical conditions may interact with Mexiletine . Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have other heart problems (eg, heart block or AV block, conductions problems), congestive heart failure, or a pacemaker
  • if you have low blood pressure, liver problems, or a seizure disorder

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Mexiletine . Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Cimetidine because the side effects of Mexiletine may be increased
  • Hydantoins (eg, phenytoin), phenobarbital, or rifampin because the effectiveness of Mexiletine may be decreased
  • Caffeine, lidocaine, or theophylline because side effects may be increased by Mexiletine

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Mexiletine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Mexiletine :

Use Mexiletine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take Mexiletine with food or antacids.
  • Take Mexiletine regularly to receive the most benefit from it. Taking Mexiletine at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
  • Continue to use Mexiletine even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
  • If you miss a dose of Mexiletine , take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Mexiletine .

Important safety information:

  • Mexiletine may cause dizziness, lightheadedness, or blurred vision. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to Mexiletine . Using Mexiletine alone, with certain other medicines, or with alcohol may lessen your ability to drive or perform other potentially dangerous tasks.
  • Do not suddenly stop taking Mexiletine without checking with your doctor.
  • Before you have any medical or dental treatments, emergency care, or surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are using Mexiletine .
  • LAB TESTS, including liver and heart function, may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use Mexiletine with extreme caution in CHILDREN. Safety and effectiveness have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant while taking Mexiletine , discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Mexiletine during pregnancy. Mexiletine is excreted in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Mexiletine .

Possible side effects of Mexiletine :

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Blurred vision; clumsiness; constipation; diarrhea; dizziness or lightheadedness; headache; heartburn; incoordination; nausea; nervousness; stomach discomfort; tremor; vomiting.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); blurred vision or other vision problems; chest pain; fainting; fever; irregular, fast, or slow heartbeat; severe dizziness or lightheadedness; severe stomach pain; sore throat; yellowing of the skin or eyes.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org/findyour.htm), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include coma; fainting; heart attack; seizures; severe dizziness or lightheadedness; severe nausea and vomiting; severe slow or irregular heartbeat; unusual numbness or tingling.

Proper storage of Mexiletine :

Store Mexiletine below 86 degrees F (30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Mexiletine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Mexiletine , please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Mexiletine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Mexiletine . If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Issue Date: September 5, 2007
Database Edition 07.3.1.003
Copyright © 2007 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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