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Amiodarone is used to treat uneven heartbeats where other medicines either have not worked or cannot be used. It is also used  to treat irregular and rapid heartbeats in various heart diseases like Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome, atrial flutter or atrial fibrillation and paroxysmal tachycardia.

How it works

Amiodarone is belongs to a group of drugs called antiarrhythmics. It works by modifying electrical activity; thus relaxing and slowing overactive heart muscles. 

Common side effects

Abnormal liver function tests, Allergic skin rash, Altered salivation, Altered sense of smell, Constipation, Decreased libido, Altered taste, Flushing, Headache, Insomnia, Loss of appetite


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Expert advice

  • Do not start or continue amiodarone if you have signs of an allergic reaction like a rash, swallowing or breathing problems, swelling of your lips, face, throat or tongue
  • Do not take amiodarone if you have a slower than usual heartbeat (called sinus bradycardia) or an illness which causes irregular heartbeats called ‘sino-atrial’ heart block; have or any other problems with your heartbeat and do not have a pacemaker fitted.
  • Do not take amiodarone if you have thyroid problem, severe breathing problems, serious blood circulation problems, low blood pressure, weak heart (cardiomyopathy) or heart failure.
  • Avoid using amiodarone if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

Frequently asked questions


Q.Is amiodarone a beta blocker or an ace inhibitor or a diuretic or an inotrope?
No. Amiodarone is belongs to a group of drugs called antiarrhythmics. It works by relaxing overactive heart muscles.
Q.Is amiodarone rich in iodine?
Yes. Amiodarone contains iodine.
Q.Is amiodarone safe or is amiodarone safe to take?
Amiodarone is relatively safe if used at prescribed doses for the prescribed duration as advised by your doctor.
Q.Is amiodarone dangerous?
It can be dangerous if taken in inappropriate doses.
Q.Is amiodarone dialyzed?
Yes, amiodarone is dialyzed.
Q.Can I take amiodarone with Viagra(sildenafil) or Tylenol (acetaminophen) or ibuprofen or Benadryl (diphenhydramine)?
Drugs like Viagra(sildenafil), Tylenol (acetaminophen), ibuprofen or Benadryl (diphenhydramine) can increase the side-effects of amiodarone, and vice verca. Please consult your doctor before taking amiodarone with any other drug.
Q.Does amiodarone lower blood pressure or cause dizziness?
Yes, it causes low blood pressure, dizziness.
Q. Does it causes constipation?
 Yes, it causes  constipation.
Q.Does amiodarone affects the heart rate or does it cause prolonged Qt interval?
Amiodarone is an antiarrhythmic agent known to cause prolongation of QT interval and controls the heart rate.
Q.Does amiodarone stimulate T4 receptors?
No, amiodarone does not stimulate T4 receptors directly.
Q.Does amiodarone cause swelling?
Amiodarone can cause swelling due to allergic reaction.

Content on this page was last updated on 14 October, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)