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Understanding the precautions and warnings with alfuzosin before taking the medication can help to ensure a safe treatment process. For example, the drug can cause low blood pressure and may increase your risk of developing a change in heart rhythm. Alfuzosin warnings and precautions also extend to people with liver disease, who are allergic to any component of the drug, and to women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.
What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider Before Taking Alfuzosin?You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking alfuzosin hydrochloride (Uroxatral®) if you have:
- Liver disease, such as liver failure, cirrhosis, or hepatitis
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- An irregular heart rhythm known as QT prolongation or long QT syndrome
- Low blood pressure (hypotension)
- Chest pain (angina)
- Any allergies, including allergies to foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you:
- Have an upcoming cataract surgery
- Are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
- Are breastfeeding.
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about any other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Specific Precautions and Warnings With AlfuzosinSome warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking alfuzosin include the following:
- Alfuzosin can potentially interact with many other medications (see Drug Interactions With Alfuzosin).
- Alfuzosin can cause low blood pressure (hypotension). This can be especially severe in people who already have low blood pressure or who take blood pressure medications.
- Alfuzosin may increase the risk of a change in heart rhythm called QT prolongation. If you already have long QT syndrome or take medications that increase the QT interval, alfuzosin may not be a good choice for you.
- The kidneys help remove alfuzosin from the body. If you have kidney disease, your healthcare provider may need to monitor your response to alfuzosin more closely.
- Alfuzosin commonly causes drowsiness and dizziness, which may interfere with your ability to drive a car, operate heavy machinery, or focus mentally.
- Before you start alfuzosin, your healthcare provider should make sure your enlarged prostate symptoms are not caused by another condition, such as prostate cancer or bladder problems.
- Medications like alfuzosin have been reported to cause intraoperative floppy iris syndrome, a problem with the eyes that can occur during cataract surgery. Stopping alfuzosin before surgery probably does not prevent this problem from occurring. Before having eye surgery, make sure to tell your healthcare provider if you are or have been taking alfuzosin.
- Alfuzosin is considered a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it probably will not cause problems if used during pregnancy, although the full risks are not currently known (see Uroxatral and Pregnancy). It's important to note that alfuzosin is not approved for any use in women.
- It is not known if alfuzosin passes through breast milk in humans. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start breastfeeding, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Uroxatral and Breastfeeding).