Amiodarone is a chemical that is used in drugs meant to treat irregular heartbeat, a condition technically known as arrhythmia. These medicines are available as oral capsules as well as in the form of vials and ampoules to be administered intravenously. It has been proven conclusively that amiodarone has the property of regularizing abnormally fast heartbeat. Amiodarone is a fat-soluble chemical, so it tends to get concentrated in the tissues of muscles, liver, skin and lungs. The metabolism of amiodarone taken place majorly in the liver and tends to affect the synthesis of other drugs. Excessive consumption of such medicines may lead to an abnormal rise in the level of amiodarone in the body and lead to toxicity. It has been found the consumption of grapefruit reduces the rate at which amiodarone is metabolized and thereby leads to an increase in the level of amiodarone serum. The fact that amiodarone cannot be excreted through urine also increases the chances of the build-up of the chemical in the body. Increase in age also predisposes a person to the adverse effects of amiodarone overdose.
Excessive amiodarone plasma in the body mostly affects the lungs, causing fibrosis or worsening preexistent lung ailments. It may also cause the hormones released by the thyroid gland to function abnormally. Besides, a majority of the people who consume these medicines also develop very fine deposits on the cornea that sometimes produces a bluish halo around the frame of vision. In addition, liver enzymes may also be secreted at an abnormal rate and lead to cirrhosis and also make the skin become pale and discolored, especially in people who are naturally fair. An amiodarone test is conducted in order to screen the effects of amiodarone overdose and check whether the patient is reacting positively or negatively to the treatment for heartbeat irregularities.
No special preparation is required for the test. You should consult your regular physician to fix an exact date and time for the test. Age, gender and diet may cause some variation in the test results. Also, if you are already on some additional medications meant for treating some other ailment, you should seek your doctor’s advice as to whether you may continue to take those medicines, or temporarily discontinue their use before and during the test.
The actual test merely involves the collection of a blood sample from a vein in the arm through a syringe.