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Mexiletine: Anti arrhythmic drug.

General Information
Brand names and manufacturer
Type: OTC/Prescription/schedule

What should I know before taking this drug
Dosage information
Adverse reactions
Additional information if any

Brand names and manufacturer

Mexitil cap ( Zy.Cad (G.Rem))
Mexitil inj [ Zy.Cad (G.Rem)] 

Type: OTC/Prescription/schedule

Mexiletine is a prescription drug available from your pharmacy store only with the prescription of a qualified medical practitioner. 


Mexiletine pronounced as: mex-IL-e-teen 

What is mexiletine?

Mexiletine is an anti arrhythmic drug. 

Common uses of mexiletine

Mexiletine is used for treating life threatening heart rhythm disturbances like ventricular fibrillation, ventricular tachycardia.   

  • Take mexiletine exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If do not understand these instructions ask your pharmacist, nurse or doctor to explain them to you.
  • Take oral dose of mexiletine with meals with one glass of water at regular intervals to be effective.
  • Do not take mexiletine in larger amounts or for longer duration than recommended by your doctor. 
  • Do not skip doses or stop taking mexiletine without consulting your doctor. Stopping suddenly may worsen cardiac arrhythmias.
  • Mexiletine injection should be given under medical supervision with provision for cardiac monitoring.
  • Always remember to inform your health expert if you are currently taking any OTC or prescription drugs like,
    1. Rifamipicin ( anti TB drug)
    2. Other antiarrythmic drugs like Flecainide, procainamide, lidocaine quinidine
    3. Cimetidine (gastric medication)
    4. theophylline ( anti asthma drug)
    5. Anti convulsants like phenytoin, phenobarbitone
  • Inform your doctor if you have following medical diseases , as Mexiletine should be used cautiously in these conditions
    1. Family history of long QT interval or sudden cardiac death
    2. History of heart block and without pace maker
    3. Sinus node disease
    4. Liver disease
    5. Seizure disorder

When not to take mexiletine

Do not take mexiletine if you have heart problems. 

What are the precautions I should follow for mexiletine?

Old people:
Pregnant woman: Mexiletine belongs to FDA pregnancy category C. This means that mexiletine may harm an unborn baby if used during pregnancy but potential benefit may warrant use of the drug in pregnant woman despite potential risks. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or are planning for conception.

Lactating women: It is not known whether mexiletine passes into breast milk or if it could harm the baby. Do not take mexiletine with out first talking to doctor if you are breast feeding a baby.

Other: Mexiletine causes dizziness, blurring of vision. Hence when affected avoid alcohol and activities which requires you to be alert like driving, operating heavy machinery.

What are the dosage forms mexiletine is available in the market

Mexiletine is available as injection and tablet. Your doctor will prescribe it depending on the severity of the condition.

Use as directed by your physician, your physician prescribes depending on the severity of disease. Use the complete course of medication as prescribed by your physician even though you feel better after one or two days of usage of medication. 

What about if I missed the dose of mexiletine

If it is almost the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at same time to cover up the missed dose. 

What should I do if I over dosage mexiletine

In case of overdose contact your nearest poison control centre or emergency medical centre for immediate care by physician.  

The overdose symptoms of mexiletine are

  • Very slow Irregular heartbeat
  • Extreme weakness
  • Fainting 
  • Chest pain / heart attack
  • Tingling and numbness in extremities

What are the common side effects of mexiletine?

Mexiletine may cause following side effects 

  • Giddiness 
  • Heartburn 
  • Nervousness 
  • Nausea & vomiting
  • Diarrhoea 
  • Constipation 
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Tremors

When to consult the health expert about the side effects of mexiletine

Consult your doctor immediately if notice following symptoms.

  • Allergic reaction like swollen lips, hives, difficulty in breathing, rashes. Peeling of skin etc
  • Visual disturbances like halo, decrease in vision
  • Increase in severity of tremors
  • Irregular heart rate, sweating, anxiety 
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Jaundice (yellowing of skin & eyes)
  • Easy bruising or bleeding

How do I store mexiletine?

Store mexiletine at room temp (15 – 30 degrees C). Avoid excessive heat, moisture or direct sunlight, never store in the bathroom.Keep it out of reach of children. Make sure that any leftover portion is disposed off safely.

  • Regular monitoring of ECG (electrocardiogram), liver function test is required when on mexiletine.
  • Visit your doctor regularly for monitoring your blood pressure, pulse rate and heart rhythm and eye examination when taking mexiletine.
  • Adopt healthy lifestyle changes like regular exercise, healthy diet; quit smoking, alcohol to improve your overall health.  
It is imp to read manufacturing packaging instruction carefully if available and always do not hesitate to consult pharmacist or physician for any information. 

Written by: Healthplus24 team
Date last updated: July 16, 2011 

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