Anagrelide

Anagrelide treats a condition where the blood makes too many platelets. It may make you dizzy. Get out of bed slowly, resting your feet on the floor for a few minutes before standing up.

Anagrelide Overview

Reviewed: October 2, 2013
Updated: 

Anagrelide is a prescription medication used to treat a condition where the blood makes too many platelets. Anagrelide belongs to a group of drugs called platelet-reducing agents. These work by slowing the production of platelets in the body.

Anagrelide comes as a capsule to take by mouth. It is usually taken with or without food 2 to 4 times a day.

Common side effects of anagrelide include headache, irregular heart beats, diarrhea, weakness, and nausea. Anagrelide can also cause dizziness. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how this medication affects you.

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Anagrelide Cautionary Labels

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Uses of Anagrelide

Anagrelide is a prescription medication used to treat a condition where the blood makes too many platelets. Too many platelets in the blood increases the risk for serious events such as a stroke, heart attack, or bleeding.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

 

Anagrelide Brand Names

Anagrelide may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Anagrelide Drug Class

Anagrelide is part of the drug class:

Side Effects of Anagrelide

Common side effects of anagrelide include the following:

  • headache
  • irregular heart beats
  • diarrhea
  • weakness
  • nausea
  • dizziness
  • body swelling
  • stomach pain
  • difficulty breathing
  • flatulence
  • vomiting

This is not a complete list of anagrelide side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Serious side effects have been reported with anagrelide.

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

Anagrelide Interactions

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Especially tell your doctor if you take:

This is not a complete list of all drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Anagrelide Precautions

Serious side effects can occur with use of anagrelide. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:

  • rash
  • hives
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • blood in urine or stool
  • black or tarry stools
  • chest pain
  • fluttering sensation in the chest
  • fast, forceful, or irregular heartbeats
  • swelling of the arms, hands, feet, ankles or lower legs
  • difficulty breathing
  • cough
  • slow or difficult speech
  • fainting
  • weakness or numbness of an arm or leg
  • pain, burning, or tingling in the hands or feet
  • seizure
  • changes in vision

Do not take this medication if you:

  • are allergic to anagrelide or to any of its ingredients
  • have severe liver impairment

Do not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how this medication affects you.

Anagrelide Food Interactions

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with this medication and can lead to potentially dangerous effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor.

Inform MD

Before taking anagrelide,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to anagrelide or any other medications.
  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking or plan to take.
  • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had bleeding problems; high or low blood pressure; lactose intolerance (inability to digest dairy products) or heart, kidney, or liver disease.
  • do not take anagrelide if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You should use an effective form of birth control to prevent pregnancy during your treatment with anagrelide. Talk to your doctor about types of birth control that are right for you. If you become pregnant while taking anagrelide, call your doctor immediately. Do not breast-feed while you are taking anagrelide.
  • if you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking anagrelide.
  • you should know that anagrelide may make you dizzy, especially when you first start taking the medication. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how this medication affects you.
  • you should know that anagrelide may cause dizziness, lightheadedness, and fainting when you get up too quickly from a lying position. This is more common when you first start taking anagrelide. To avoid this problem, get out of bed slowly, resting your feet on the floor for a few minutes before standing up.
  • plan to avoid unnecessary or prolonged exposure to sunlight and to wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Anagrelide may make your skin sensitive to sunlight.

Anagrelide and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

The FDA categorizes medications based on safety for use during pregnancy. Five categories - A, B, C, D, and X, are used to classify the possible risks to an unborn baby when a medication is taken during pregnancy.

This medication falls into category C. There are no well-controlled studies that have been done in pregnant women. Anagrelide should be used during pregnancy only if the possible benefit outweighs the possible risk to the unborn baby.

Anagrelide and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.

It is not known if this medication crosses into human milk. Because many medications can cross into human milk and because of the possibility for serious adverse reactions in nursing infants with use of this medication, a choice should be made whether to stop nursing or stop the use of this medication. Your doctor and you will decide if the benefits outweigh the risk of using this medication.

Anagrelide Usage

Anagrelide comes as a capsule to take by mouth. It is usually taken with or without food 2 to 4 times a day. Take anagrelide at around the same times every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take anagrelide exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

Anagrelide may help control your condition but will not cure it. Continue to take anagrelide even if you feel well. Do not stop taking anagrelide without talking to your doctor. If you suddenly stop taking anagrelide, the number of platelets in your blood will increase and you may experience symptoms.

Anagrelide Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully. The dose your doctor recommends may be based on the following:

  • the condition being treated
  • other medical conditions you have
  • other medications you are taking
  • how you respond to this medication
  • your weight
  • your height
  • your age
  • your gender

The recommended starting dosage for adult patients is 0.5 mg four times a day or 1 mg twice a day.

The dosage should then be adjusted to the lowest effective dosage required to achieve therapeutic response and without toxicity.

Dosage should not exceed 10 mg/day or 2.5 mg in a single dose.

Anagrelide Overdose

If you take too much this medication, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

If this medication is administered by a healthcare provider in a medical setting, it is unlikely that an overdose will occur. However, if overdose is suspected, seek emergency medical attention.

Other Requirements

  • Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children.
  • Store it at room temperature and away from light or excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).