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FYI :Prograf and Food
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FYI :Prograf and Food

Prograf is a medicine that slows down the bodys immune system. For this reason, it works as an anti-rejection medicine. Prograf helps patients who have had a liver/kidney transplant protect their new organ and prevent it from being rejected by the body.  This medicine can cause the amount of potassium in your blood-stream to increase. For this reason you should avoid large amounts of foods that have a high potassium content, for example dried fruit, bananas, tomatoes and low sodium salt, while you are taking this medicine, also avoid potassium supplements. I had a bad reaction from eating these foods. I had been warned about grapefruit juice, as it increases the amount of Prograf in the blood-stream. I did not know about the problems with other foods. Being a health food addict, this is what I eat. I had noticed I had not felt good for a couple of days but did not think that much about it. After about 3 days I knew something wasn't right with my body. I went to the emergency room at my local hospital and after many blood tests I found out that I had too much potassium in my body. I was fortunate the level was not that high. It was an easy cure and I'am fine, (no damage to me or my new liver), but I wanted to warn everyone about this. My doctor told me there are many foods that are being tested to see what there reaction is when Prograf is used by a transplant recipient. The new foods being tested are all citrus fruits. Pomegranate and apricots are now being studied to see if they have the same effect as grapefruit juice, (increasing Prograf levels). My doctors advise to me is, "If you eat something and later don't feel well, don't eat it again." Listen to your body.  :o)  ~Kande
13 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi Kande
Glad your ok i found a list of potassium rich foods also to back up your list.



Potassium rich foods Potassium Content Sodium content RDA % * Calories
Soya flour 1650mg 9mg 47% 450
Black treacle 1500mg 97mg 43% 260
Apricots ready-to-eat 1380mg 15mg 39% 160
Bran Wheat 1160mg 28mg 33% 200
Tomato Puree 1150mg 240mg 33% 70
Sultanas 1050mg 20mg 30% 275
Raisins 1020mg 60mg 30% 270
Potato chips (crisps UK) 1000mg 1000mg 29% 450
All Bran 1000mg 900mg 29% 260
Wheatgerm 950mg 5mg 27% 300
Figs 900mg 60mg 26% 100
Dried mixed fruit 880mg 48mg 25% 230
Bombay Mix 790mg 800mg 23% 500
Papadums 750mg 2400mg 22% 370
Currants 720mg 14mg 22% 270
Sultana Bran 660mg 700mg 19% 300
Seeds average 650mg 20mg 18% 500
Nuts average (unsalted) 600mg 300mg 17% 600
Baked Potato + skin 600mg 12mg 17% 130
Roast Potato 550mg 9mg 16% 160
Oven chips 530mg 50mg 15% 170
Bran Flakes 530mg 1000mg 15% 320
Gammon lean 520mg 2200mg 15% 170
Soya beans boiled 510mg 2mg 15% 140
Plantain boiled 500mg 4mg 14% 112
Raisin Splitz 500mg 10mg 14% 340
Weetos 500mg 300mg 14% 370
Crispbread 500mg 220mg 14% 320
Muesli low salt 450mg 390mg 13% 360
Sardines 430mg 650mg 12% 200
Pilchards 420mg 370mg 12% 125
Veal 420mg 110mg 12% 230
Wholemeal Pasta 400mg 130mg 11% 320
Banana 400mg 1mg 11% 96


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Avatar_m_tn
hi,
I found some info on prograf and the  active ingredient drug tacrolimus.
it is a big article and will have to maybe post in two areas,

How does it work?
Prograf capsules and injection contain the active ingredient tacrolimus, which is a type of medicine called an immunosuppressant. Immunosuppressants are used to dampen down the activity of cells in the immune system.

When you receive an organ transplant the donor cells, although matched as closely as possible to yours, will not be identical to yours. This means that your immune system will recognise the tissue as foreign and try to attack the transplanted organ. This can result in the transplant being rejected.

Tacrolimus is used to prevent transplant rejection because it suppresses the activity of the cells in your immune system that would normally attack the transplanted tissue.

Tacrolimus acts on the white blood cells. It works by blocking the action of a substance called calcineurin that is found in white blood cells called T-lymphocytes. This action prevents the T-lymphocytes from producing substances called lymphokines.

Lymphokines are normally produced by the T-lymphocytes when a foreign substance is detected in the body. The purpose of the lymphokines is to stimulate the production of more T and B lymphocytes, the white blood cells responsible for regulating and triggering immune responses. The T and B lymphocytes attack foreign invadors and defend the body against infection and foreign cells.

By preventing the production of lymphokines, tacrolimus suppresses the action of the T and B lymphocytes. This stops these cells from attacking foreign invadors and triggering other responses by the immune system.

Tacrolimus is used to prevent rejection of kidney, liver and heart transplants. It is used in combination with other immunosuppressant medicines, such as corticosteroids.

Tacrolimus can be given by mouth or by a drip into a vein (intravenous infusion) if administration by mouth is not possible.

What is it used for?


Preventing the body rejecting a transplanted kidney, liver or heart


Treating transplant rejection when other immunosuppressants have failed to control the rejection.


Warning!


Prograf capsules should be taken on an empty stomach, or at least one hour before or two to three hours after a meal.


This medicine may cause various side effects that could reduce your ability to drive or operate machinery safely. These effects may be enhanced by drinking alcohol. You should make sure you are aware of your reaction to this medicine before driving or operating machinary.


Unless your doctor or pharmacist tells you otherwise, you should avoid drinking grapefruit juice while taking this medicine, as it may increase the level of this medicine in your blood and therefore increase the risk of side effects.


This medicine can cause the amount of potassium in your bloodstream to increase. For this reason you should avoid consuming large amounts of foods that have a high potassium content, for example dried fruit, bananas, tomatoes and 'low sodium' salt, while you are taking the medicine. You should also avoid potassium supplements.


This medicine increases your susceptibility to infections because the suppressed immune system is less able to fight them. For this reason, consult your doctor immediately if you develop a sore throat, fever, any infections, or begin to feel generally unwell.


People receiving long-term or intensive immunosuppressive treatment are at increased risk of developing lymphomas and other cancers, particularly skin cancer. To reduce the risk of skin cancer, you should minimise your exposure to strong sunlight and UV light by wearing protective clothing and using a sunscreen with a high protection factor. Discuss this with your doctor.


This medicine may be harmful to an unborn baby, so it is important to avoid getting pregnant during treatment. Unfortunately, this medicine may also affect the effectiveness of hormonal contraceptives such as the pill. For this reason, women who could get pregnant should ideally use a non-hormonal method of contraception, eg condoms, to prevent pregnancy while taking this medicine. Seek advice from your doctor or pharmacist. Consult your doctor immediately if you get pregnant during treatment.


During treatment with this medicine your doctor will need to monitor various things to make sure the treatment is working properly and not causing side effects. Your blood pressure, nervous system and eyesight will be monitored, and your heart using an ECG. You will also need blood tests to monitor your kidney and liver function, blood sugar, blood clotting, blood cells, levels of salts (electrolytes, eg potassium), and amount of the medicine in your blood. Measuring the level of medicine in your blood helps your doctor to prescribe you the correct dose. If you get diarrhoea during treatment, this can affect the amount of medicine in your blood and extra monitoring of your tacrolimus blood level is recommended.


Use with caution in


Decreased kidney function


Decreased liver function


Heart disease


People with an abnormal heart rhythm present from birth and seen on a heart monitoring trace (ECG) as a 'prolonged QT interval'


High blood pressure (hypertension)


Infections


Fluid overload


Swelling due to excess fluid retention (oedema)


People being treated with corticosteroids.


Not to be used in


Allergy to macrolide type antibiotics, eg erythromycin.


This medicine should not be used if you are allergic to one or any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.

If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using this medicine and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

Certain medicines should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding. However, other medicines may be safely used in pregnancy or breastfeeding providing the benefits to the mother outweigh the risks to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, before using any medicine.


This medicine should only be used during pregnancy if there is no safer alternative and if the potential benefit to the mother outweighs the potential risk to the developing baby. If this medicine is used during pregnancy there is a risk of premature delivery and side effects on the baby. The newborn baby should be carefully monitored for any side effects of the medicine, in particular on the kidneys.


Women who could get pregnant should ideally use a non-hormonal method of contraception, eg condoms, to prevent pregnancy while taking this medicine. Seek medical advice from your doctor.


This medicine passes into breast milk. As this could be harmful to a nursing infant, mothers who need to take this medicine should not breastfeed. Seek medical advice from your doctor.


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Avatar_m_tn
The rest of the article

Side effects

Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individual people in different ways. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine. Because a side effect is stated here, it does not mean that all people using this medicine will experience that or any side effect.


Infections


Difficulty in sleeping (insomnia)


Shaking, usually of the hands (tremor)


Headache


High blood pressure (hypertension)


Disturbances of the gut such as diarrhoea, constipation, nausea, vomiting or abdominal pain


Skin reactions such as rash, itch, acne, sweating, hair loss


Raised blood sugar level (hyperglycaemia)


Raised cholesterol level (hypercholesterolaemia)


Disturbances in the normal levels of chemical components (electrolytes) in the blood, eg raised potassium, decreased sodium, magnesium, calcium


Disturbances in the normal levels of blood cells in the blood


Shortness of breath (dyspnoea)


Appetite and weight changes


Pain in the muscles or joints


Visual disturbances


Anxiety and agitation


Confusion


Depression


Dizziness


Pins and needles or numb sensations


Seizures


Heart problems such as abnormal heart beats, enlargement of the heart, heart failure


Kidney problems such as decreased kidney function or kidney failure


Liver problems such as jaundice, hepatitis, liver failure


Ulceration or bleeding in the gut


Bleeding


Abnormal blood clots in the blood vessels (thromboembolism)


The side effects listed above may not include all of the side effects reported by the drug's manufacturer.

For more information about any other possible risks associated with this medicine, please read the information provided with the medicine or consult your doctor or pharmacist.

How can this medicine affect other medicines?

It is important to tell your doctor or pharmacist what medicines you are already taking, including those bought without a prescription and herbal medicines, before you start treatment with this medicine. Similarly, check with your doctor or pharmacist before taking any new medicines while taking this one, to ensure that the combination is safe.

The immunosuppressant ciclosporin should not be used at the same time as this medicine.

There may be an increased risk of side effects on the kidneys if this medicine is taken with other medicines that can affect the kidneys, such as the following:


aciclovir


aminoglycoside antibiotics, eg gentamicin


amphotericin


co-trimoxazole


ganciclovir


non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), eg ibuprofen, diclofenac, naproxen


trimethroprim


vancomycin.


Hormonal contraceptives such as the pill and the patch may increase the blood level of tacrolimus. Tacrolimus may also reduce the effectiveness of these hormonal contraceptives. For this reason women who could get pregnant should ideally use a non-hormonal method of contraception, eg condoms, to prevent pregnancy while taking this medicine. Seek advice from your doctor or pharmacist.

The following should be avoided while taking this medicine as they increase the risk of the level of potassium in your blood rising too high (hyperkalaemia):


potassium-sparing diuretics, eg amiloride, spironolactone, triamterene


potassium supplements


potassium-containing salt substitutes.


The following medicines may increase the level of tacrolimus in the blood, which could increase the risk of side effects. If you are taking any of these with tacrolimus your doctor may need to reduce your dose of tacrolimus:


the macrolide antibiotics clarithromycin, erythromycin, telithromycin


the azole antifungals fluconazole, ketoconazole, itraconazole, voriconazole, clotrimazole


HIV protease inhibitors such as ritonavir, nelfinavir, saquinavir


chloramphenicol (by mouth or injection)


danazol


diltiazem


felodipine


nefazodone


nicardipine


nifedipine


omeprazole


verapamil.


The following medicines may decrease the level of tacrolimus in the blood, which may make it less effective and lead to transplant rejection. If you are taking any of these at the same time your doctor may need to increase your dose of tacrolimus:


phenobarbital


phenytoin


rifabutin


rifampicin


the herbal remedy St John's wort (Hypericum perforatum). You should not take this herbal remedy while you are taking tacrolimus.


Corticosteroids such as methylprednisolone may increase or decrease the blood level of tacrolimus. Your doctor will adjust your tacrolimus dose as required.

Vaccines may be less effective in people taking this medicine. This is because tacrolimus suppresses the action of the immune system and could prevent the body from forming adequate antibodies. Live vaccines should be avoided during treatment with this medicine because they may cause infection. Live vaccines include the following: oral polio; rubella; measles, mumps and rubella (MMR); BCG; yellow fever and oral typhoid vaccines.

Other medicines containing the same active ingredient

There are currently no other medicines used for transplant rejection available in the UK that contain tacrolimus as the active ingredient.

Protopic ointment contains tacrolimus, but is used to treat eczema.


Last updated 14.6.2006

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Avatar_f_tn
Dan,...I love you! This is wonderful! I have never been so impressed with anything like this before. How long did you work on this friend? You know I am in debt to you for the rest of my life!!!  :o)  Thank you so very much!  This is exactly what every transplant recipient needs. A million thanks to you forever!  ((((HUGS))))  KANDE
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Avatar_m_tn
Thanks for helping me you are a good friend and help so many here it was the least i could do..
Big Love and hugs back
Daniel
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Avatar_f_tn
Hey sweetheart, don't be a stranger! Visit more often. Maybe after Nick transplants you will both hang around here. Oh that would be great....to have both of you!!!  ((((HUGS))))
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Avatar_n_tn
thanks kande and D977 for all information about prograf and its side effects .....this is sudarshan liver transplant recipient from India ....can u tell me from where u people will get this prograf capsule 1 mg .. looking forward for your  reply
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Avatar_m_tn
1 mg capsules of Prograf are available at most pharmacies in the US. If they don't have them on hand they can get them quickly. I would guess that 1 mg capsules are the most common size capsules here.
Mike
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Avatar_f_tn
HI, I had a kideny transplant 12 years ago and never knew about potassium.  I was never told the only thing that I knew was about the grapefruit and that my sugar could go up and that I would gain weight.  
I did gain weight and my sugar is boardline now other wise I'm doing and feeling good.  Good luck to everyone that has a transplant " IT'S THE GIFT OF LIFE"
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Avatar_n_tn
I'm doing some research for a friend who has been on both Celcpt and prograf since having a liver transplant over 13 years ago.We were talking about him taking vitamins.I have found some such as calcium and omega 3 that is not good for him.Is there anything else he should avoid other than what I've mentioned and grapefruit?  TB
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Avatar_m_tn
I am kidney transplant recipient. I have had many problems, but the diariara is most troublesome.  Any suggestions?  Yes I agree my new kidney is a gift of life and is working good, but the rest of my body has and is going thru a lot of changes and not good ones.
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Avatar_m_tn
I have taken prograf and cellcept for 12 yrs. A month ago I went nito renal failure.The kidney Dr. said it was from the prograf that this happened. The liver Dr.disagrees and is putting me back on prograf lower dose. I have been taking prednisone in the mean time . Kind of worried this will happen again. Anyone else have this problem in the past and what was done about it .
Thanks , any input would be welcome !
Kathy
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Avatar_f_tn
you are not alone there I had kidney/pancreas transplant 8 yrs ago. Have done really well for most part had alot of problems I can deal with but the Diarrhea is  the worst thing in the world almost caused me to give up a few times. Sorry you are going through this but believe me you are not alone.
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