Tacrolimus is a prescription used to prevent rejections of a heart, kidney, or liver transplant. This is also used to treat transplant rejection when other immunosuppressants have failed to control the rejection.
A hearttransplant is usually reserved for people who have tried prescriptions or othersurgical procedures, but their conditions haven’t successfully improved. Thistransplant is performed when other treatments for heart problems haven’t workedwhich leads to heart failure. A heart transplant is a surgery that removes thediseased heart from a person and replacing it with a healthy one from an organdonor.
A kidneytransplant is getting a healthy kidney that is placed inside your body to dothe work your kidney can no longer do. When having a kidney transplant, thereare fewer limits on what you can eat and drink but you must follow aheart-healthy diet. Your health and energy should improve. An effective kidneytransplant may let you live the kind of life you were living. It is before yougot kidney disease. For kidney failure, there are two types of treatment –dialysis or transplant.
A livertransplant removes a liver that no longer functions properly. This processreplaces a healthy liver from a living or deceased donor. In somecircumstances, the rapid failure of a previously normal liver may happen. Justafter the surgical removal of part of the organ, the human liver stimulates andreturns to its usual size.
The Foodand Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this prescription.Tacrolimus is in the class of medications called immunosuppressants. Thisweakens your body’s defense system to help your body accept the new organ as ifit were your own. This product is supplied as a capsule for oral use and isavailable in the dosage strengths of 0.5 mg, 1 mg, and 5 mg.
How doesTacrolimus work?
Tacrolimusis an immunosuppressant drug and is used to dampen down the activity of cellsin the immune system. When you receive an organ transplant, the cells of thedonor, although matched as closely as possible to yours, will not be identicalto yours. This means that your immune system will recognize the tissue asforeign and try to attack the transplanted organ. This can result in therejection of the transplanted organ.
Thismedication suppresses the activity of the cells in your immune system thatwould normally attack the transplanted tissue. This acts on white blood cellsand blocks the action of a substance called calcineurin. Wherein, it is to befound in white blood cells called T-lymphocytes. This action preventsT-lymphocytes from producing substances called lymphokines. Lymphokines arenormally produced by the T-lymphocytes when a foreign substance is detected inthe body. The purpose of lymphokines is to stimulate the production of more Tand B lymphocytes. The white blood cells are responsible for regulating andtriggering immune responses. The T and B lymphocytes attack foreign invadersand defend the body against infection and foreign cells.
How touse Tacrolimus?
Tacrolimusis usually taken every 12 hours or as directed by your doctor. Each dose may betaken with or without a meal. If you have nausea or an upset stomach, you maytake this medication with food. The medicine is to be taken by mouth with afull glass of water. To help you remember, take the drug at the same time andin the same way each day. The capsule should be swallowed as a whole with afull glass of water. Do not chew, break, or crush it. The recommended dosage isbased on your medical condition and response to the treatment. Your doctor maydirect you to start at a lower dose and eventually increase it. Drink plenty offluids while having this treatment. Doing so may lessen the risk of certainside effects.
Do nottake more or less than it is given. Do not suddenly stop taking Tacrolimuswithout the consent of your doctor. Even if you feel well, continue to take themedication until the full prescription is done. If you missed a dose, call yourdoctor for instructions. Do not double the dose to make up for the missed dose.Let your doctor know if your condition worsens or does not improve after 2 to 3weeks.
What arethe side effects of Tacrolimus?
- Stomach or upset stomach
- Trouble sleeping or insomnia
- Loss of appetite
- Tingling or swelling of the hands or feet
Tell yourdoctor if these serious side effects occur such as:
- Mental or mood changes
- Change in the amount of urine
- Pounding heartbeat
- Easy bruising or bleeding
- Redness, pain, or swelling of arms and legs
- Muscle cramps, pain, or weakness
- Dark urine
- Severe stomach or abdominal pain
- Persistent nausea or vomiting
- Tacrolimus may make you more sensitive to the sun. Avoid or limit your time in the sun. If you can’t avoid being in the sin, wear protective clothing and use sunscreen.
- If you get a cold or other infection while receiving this medication, call your doctor right away.
- You should avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while taking Tacrolimus. It may increase the level of this medicine in your blood and may also increase the risk of side effects.
- This drug increases your susceptibility to infections because the suppressed immune system is less able to fight them. For this reason, you need to consult your doctor right away if you develop any signs of infection.
- Use this with caution in people with decreased liver or kidney function as well as with heart disease, hypertension, and edema.
- This medication should not be used in people who are allergic to Tacrolimus. Let your doctor know if you ever had an allergic reaction to this product before.
- Tacrolimus is to be used with caution in people with high blood pressure, fluid overload or edema, abnormal heart rhythm or those with heart disease.
- This is not recommended as well for use in people who are allergic to macrolide-type antibiotics such as clarithromycin and erythromycin.