Digoxin has been around for centuries, but its use has been limited by several factors. Because of its narrow therapeutic window, digoxin requires close monitoring - Shan Chen


image by: Krizia Casiño

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Digoxin: The Art and Science

Following Withering's description of the use of foxglove for the therapy of “dropsy” in 1785, the use of digitalis glycosides has been the subject of innumerable articles, not only in medicine, but also in literature and art. For example, the numerous speculations that Van Gogh's yellowish view of the world that was at times reflected in his paintings was probably due to digitalis toxicity.

For over 2 centuries, the inotropic properties of the digitalis glycosides have been used in the treatment of chronic heart failure and its vagotonic properties to slow the ventricular response to certain supraventricular dysrhythmias. However, fewer pharmaceuticals have aroused more controversy…

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 Digoxin: The Art and Science

The use of digoxin in the therapy of systolic heart failure and certain supraventricular tachycardias is controversial.

5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Take Digoxin Any More

Digoxin has been used for the treatment of atrial fibrillation and heart failure since the 70’s. Brand names of Digoxin include Lanoxin and Digitek and all work by inhibiting the sodium/potassium ATPase pump in heart cells which leads to increased contractility (squeeze). However, there are better options for treatment and new reasons for concern about digoxin,

7 things you should know

Digoxin works by inhibiting an enzyme (called Na-K ATPase) responsible for the exchange of sodium for other electrolytes in cells. This, in turn, increases the amount of calcium that enters the heart, affecting the electrical system of the heart and ultimately the way the heart beats.


It’s used to control some heart problems, such as irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias) including atrial fibrillation. It can also help to manage the symptoms of heart failure, usually with other medicines.

The Cardiology Advisor

Digoxin is an old drug, perhaps ancient by some standards. It is a purified cardiac glycoside extracted from the purple foxglove (digitalis purpurea) plant. Trade names for digoxin include Lanoxin, Digitek, and Lanoxicaps. It is also a generic medication. Digoxin has been used in patients with atrial fibrillation and congestive heart failure for decades and even centuries.

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