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Drugs reference index «Flomax»

Flomax
Flomax
Flomax


Flomax

Generic Name: tamsulosin (Oral route)

tam-SOO-loe-sin

Commonly used brand name(s):

In the U.S.

  • Flomax

Available Dosage Forms:

  • Capsule

Therapeutic Class: Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy Agent

Pharmacologic Class: Alpha-1 Adrenergic Blocker

Uses For Flomax

Tamsulosin is used to treat the signs and symptoms of benign enlargement of the prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH). Benign enlargement of the prostate is a problem that can occur in men as they get older. The prostate gland is located below the bladder. As the prostate gland enlarges, certain muscles in the gland may become tight and get in the way of the tube that drains urine from the bladder. This can cause problems in urinating, such as a need to urinate often, a weak stream when urinating, or a feeling of not being able to empty the bladder completely.

Tamsulosin helps relax the muscles in the prostate and the opening of the bladder. This may help increase the flow of urine or decrease the symptoms. However, tamsulosin will not shrink the prostate. The prostate may continue to get larger. This may cause the symptoms to become worse over time. Therefore, even though tamsulosin may lessen the problems caused by enlarged prostate now, surgery still may be needed in the future.

This medicine is usually given only to men. It is not normally given to women or children.

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Before Using Flomax

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Use of tamsulosin in children is not recommended.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of tamsulosin in the elderly.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy CategoryExplanation
All TrimestersBAnimal studies have revealed no evidence of harm to the fetus, however, there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR animal studies have shown an adverse effect, but adequate studies in pregnant women have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus.

Breast Feeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Interactions with Medicines

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Atazanavir
  • Clarithromycin
  • Indinavir
  • Itraconazole
  • Ketoconazole
  • Nefazodone
  • Nelfinavir
  • Ritonavir
  • Saquinavir
  • Telithromycin

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Acebutolol
  • Alprenolol
  • Atenolol
  • Betaxolol
  • Bevantolol
  • Bisoprolol
  • Bucindolol
  • Carteolol
  • Carvedilol
  • Celiprolol
  • Cimetidine
  • Dilevalol
  • Esmolol
  • Labetalol
  • Levobunolol
  • Mepindolol
  • Metipranolol
  • Metoprolol
  • Nadolol
  • Nebivolol
  • Oxprenolol
  • Paroxetine
  • Penbutolol
  • Pindolol
  • Propranolol
  • Sildenafil
  • Sotalol
  • Tadalafil
  • Talinolol
  • Tertatolol
  • Timolol
  • Vardenafil

Interactions with Food/Tobacco/Alcohol

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Cataract surgery—An eye problem called Intraoperative Floppy Iris Syndrome (IFIS) has occurred in patients who are taking or who have recently taken this medicine when they are having cataract surgery. You should tell your ophthalmologist (eye doctor) before your surgery if you are taking or have taken tamsulosin in the past 9 months.
  • Kidney disease or
  • Liver disease—Effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.
  • Postural hypotension (low blood pressure) or
  • Priapism (painful or prolonged erection of the penis) or
  • Prostate cancer—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Sulfa drug (antibiotics such as sulfamethoxazole/trimethoprim [e.g., Bactrim®, Septra®]) allergy—An allergic reaction to tamsulosin has been rarely reported in patients with sulfa allergy. If you have ever had a serious or life-threatening sulfa allergy, you should tell your doctor before taking tamsulosin.

Proper Use of Flomax

Take this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.

This medicine comes with a patient information insert. Read and follow the instructions in the insert carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.

To help you remember to take your medicine, try to get into the habit of taking it at the same time each day. Take it approximately 30 minutes after the same meal each day.

Swallow the capsules whole. Do not crush, chew, or open them, unless otherwise directed by your doctor.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (capsules):
    • For benign enlargement of the prostate:
      • Adults—At first, 0.4 milligram (mg) once a day, about thirty minutes after the same meal each day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.
      • Children—Use is not recommended.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Precautions While Using Flomax

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly.

Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may occur after you take this medicine, especially when you get up from a lying or sitting position. Getting up slowly may help lessen this problem. If you feel dizzy, lie down so you do not faint. Then sit for a few moments before standing to prevent the dizziness from returning.

Because tamsulosin may cause some people to become dizzy, make sure you know how you react to this medicine before you drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are dizzy or not alert.

You should seek medical attention right away, if you experience a prolonged erection. This is an extremely rare side effect, but if it goes untreated, can result in permanent erectile dysfunction (impotence).

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

Flomax Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common
  • Cough or hoarseness
  • fever or chills
  • lower back or side pain
  • painful or difficult urination
Less common
  • Chest pain
Rare
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • fainting
  • feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • painful or prolonged erection of the penis
  • sensation of spinning
Incidence not known
  • Blurred vision
  • confusion
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position suddenly
  • fast, pounding heartbeat
  • large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  • peeling of the skin
  • sweating
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common
  • Abnormal ejaculation
  • back pain
  • body aches or pain
  • congestion
  • diarrhea
  • dryness or soreness of the throat
  • headache
  • lack or loss of strength
  • sneezing
  • stuffy or runny nose
  • tender, swollen glands in the neck
  • trouble with swallowing
  • unusual weakness
  • voice changes
Less common
  • Decreased interest in sexual intercourse
  • decreased sexual drive or performance
  • drowsiness
  • inability to have or keep an erection
  • increased cough
  • loss in sexual ability, desire, drive, or performance
  • nausea
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  • sleeplessness
  • trouble with sleeping
  • unable to sleep
Incidence not known
  • Constipation
  • hives or welts
  • itching skin
  • redness of the skin
  • skin rash
  • vomiting

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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  • Flomax Prescribing Information (FDA)
  • Flomax Consumer Overview
  • Flomax Detailed Consumer Information (PDR)
  • Flomax MedFacts Consumer Leaflet (Wolters Kluwer)
  • Tamsulosin Prescribing Information (FDA)

See Also...

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