Cardiac Glycosides

Beneficial effects of cardiac glycosides in the treatment of heart failure have been attributed to a positive inotropic effect on failing myocardium and efficacy in controlling the ventricular rate response to atrial fibrillation. The cardiac glycosides also modulate autonomic nervous system activity, and it is likely that this mechanism contributes substantially to their efficacy in the management of heart failure. However, the advent of alternative therapies that both palliate symptoms and improve survival has led to a more limited role for the cardiac glycosides in the pharmacotherapy of congestive heart failure. Only digoxin (lanoxin, lanoxicaps) is widely used today.

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