This site is intended for healthcare professionals

Go to /sign-in page

You can view 5 more pages before signing in

Monitoring side effects of amiodarone in general practice

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

The potential complications from amiodarone are legion and therefore monitoring is important

Before treatment with amiodarone:

  • patients should have careful clinical assessment, measurements of liver enzymes, thyroid function tests and serum potassium, an ECG and chest X-ray

After treatment with amiodarone has commenced:

  • it is advised that all patients taking amiodarone should have their liver function tests and thyroid function tests checked every six months (1,2). Also they should possibly have potassium levels monitored 6 monthly (2).
  • a Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin review suggests that eye examinations should be reserved for patients reporting visual symptoms (2) - this contrasts with other advice (1) which suggests that patients should have their eyes checked annually by slit examination.
  • at the first hint of worsening of breathlessness or cough organise lung function tests as amiodarone can cause fibrosing alveolitis. Symptoms suggestive of pulmonary toxicity or hyperthyroidism require urgent referral (2)
  • patients should be advised to limit sunlight exposure and to use a sunscreen.


  1. MeReC Bulletin (2002), 12 (5), 17-20.
  2. Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin (2003), 41 (2), 9-12.

Related pages

Create an account to add page annotations

Annotations allow you to add information to this page that would be handy to have on hand during a consultation. E.g. a website or number. This information will always show when you visit this page.