Diagnosing Digoxin Toxicity
Which patients may be at higher risk for digoxin toxicity? Recognizing digoxin toxicity may be difficult, but it may help to know what to look for. Patients at risk of digoxin toxicity are typically older and have comorbidities.1
Risk factors for digoxin toxicity include1,2:
- Advanced age (>80 years)
- Decrease in renal clearance or loss of renal function due to chronic disease
- Multiple concomitant prescription drugs
- Macrolide antibiotics
- Drugs that impair renal function
- Drugs that cause hypokalemia
When diagnosing digoxin toxicity, pay attention to these risk factors. Patients undergoing digoxin therapy who exhibit these risk factors should be closely monitored so that any signs of digoxin poisoning are identified early to ensure timely treatment.
To report an adverse event or for 24-hour medical information, call 1-844-293-0007.References
- Wofford JL, Ettinger WH. Risk factors and manifestations of digoxin toxicity in the elderly. Am J Emerg Med. 1991;9(suppl 1):11-15.
- Schreiber D. Toxicity, digitalis. eMedicine from WebMD Web site. http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/814404-print. Updated December 2, 2009. Accessed June 11, 2010.
DigiFab® Digoxin Immune Fab (Ovine) is indicated for the treatment of patients with life-threatening or potentially life-threatening digoxin toxicity or overdose. DigiFab® is not indicated for milder cases of digitalis toxicity.
Important Safety Information
Patients with poor cardiac function may deteriorate secondary to the withdrawal of the inotropic action of digoxin by DigiFab®. Rapid drop in serum potassium concentration may occur after treatment with DigiFab®. Patients with known allergies to sheep protein, papaya, or papain are at higher risk of an anaphylactic reaction. Suicidal ingestion may involve more than one drug. Toxic effects of other drugs or poisons should not be overlooked. The most common adverse reactions (>7%) related to DigiFab® are worsening congestive heart failure (13%), hypokalemia (13%) and worsening atrial fibrillation (7%). Please see full prescribing information, including events, precautions, or warnings.