Vestar - gem of a heart medicine

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By Dr. Victor Dumaguing

To Your Health

Saturday, August 6, 2011


ANGINA pectoris or chest pain is the most common complaint of persons with established heart disease. Chest pain occurs when there is a significant imbalance in the demand for oxygen by the heart muscle versus whatever oxygen is delivered to the heart through the coronary arteries, hence the term coronary artery disease or ischemic heart disease, given as diagnosis for people brought to the emergency room.

Angina pectoris (Latin for squeezing of the chest) is usually felt as pressure, heaviness, tightening, squeezing or aching across the chest, particularly behind the breastbone. The pain often radiates to the neck, jaw, arms, back, or half of the arm and forearm on the side of the little finger. Angina usually occurs during exertion (exertional angina), severe emotional stress, or after a heavy meal.

During these periods, the heart muscle requires and demands more oxygen than the narrowed or constricted coronary arteries can deliver. Angina typically last from 1-15 minutes and is relieved by rest. however, it must be emphasized that angina may also occur even when the person is at rest indicating that a coronary artery has narrowed to such a critical degree that the heart is not receiving enough oxygen.

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Trimetazidine is one of the medicines which, through all these years, proven by both clinical studies and personal experience to have impressive activity in preventing the occurrence of angina pectoris. Vestar, the brand of Trimetazidine of Unilab Therapharma, is available in a modified release tablet with 35 mg dose strength. By inhibiting fatty acid metabolism and secondarilky shifting to the more heart-friendly glucose metabolism as a source of energy, Vestar protects the heart against the harmful effects of ischemia.

Trimetazidine (Vestar) is rapidly absorbed from the intestinal mucosa after oral administration. In studies with animals, the modified release tablet of trimetazidine demonstrated sustained release properties, as assessed by the delayed time to peak and increased mean absorption times compared with the immediate release or 20 mg preparation. These sterling qualities of Trimetazidine done on animal studies have then been verified in humans where a Trimetazidine MR 35 mg tablet twice daily regimen did provide similar total exposure, increased plateau time, decreased peak-trough fluctuation and a 31% increase in trough concentration.

Furthermore, the Trimetazidine MR 35 mg twice daily regimen is likely to encourage patients' compliance and a better anti-ischemic protection especially during the dawn and early morning rise of blood pressure, thus adding immense work load burden on the heart.

Although none of the animal studies have shown any embryotoxixity or teratogenicity of trimetazidine, Trimetazidine should be avoided particularly the first trimester of pregnancy and also during the breastfeeding period. The most common adverse effects have been minor gastrointestinal disturbances which were mild nausea and vomiting. Except for mono amine oxidase inhibitor drugs, trimetazidine has been given favorably together with other medicines especially for those with heart and blood pressure problems.

Trimetazidine (Vestar) is indicated for the treatment of angina pectoris, and long term treatment of coronary insufficiency. The tablet must be swallowed whole with a glass of water. Ask your doctor about Vestar and you may never have to suffer from chest pains again!

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on August 06, 2011.

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