Rilutek

(riluzole)

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Slows down progression of Lou Gehrig's disease or ALS.

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Our bottom line

Rilutek (riluzole) doesn't cure the symptoms of ALS, but people do live longer on the medicine.

Quick facts about Rilutek
  • Drug class: Musculoskeletal
  • Rx status:
  • Generic status: Lower-cost generic available (riluzole)
Prices and discounts
Lowest price for 60 50mg tablets
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$132.06

Upsides

  • Rilutek (riluzole) might prolong survival of people with ALS by 3 months.
  • One of two drugs FDA approved to slow progression of ALS, however, Rilutek (riluzole) is available as a pill and not injection.
  • It might delay the need for tracheostomy in people with ALS.

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What to expect from Rilutek, on one page

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Downsides

  • There is no cure for ALS. Rilutek (riluzole) doesn't treat or improve ALS symptoms.
  • Without insurance, Rilutek (riluzole) can be costly.
  • Rilutek (riluzole) causes liver injury in half the people taking it.

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Sign up and get Pill Talk, the latest in health & medicine news from Iodine

Get our free fact sheet

What to expect from Rilutek, on one page

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Prices and discounts
Lowest price for 60 50mg tablets
Determining your location...
$132.06
How it works

Rilutek (riluzole) stops the body from releasing too much glutamate. We don't know what specifically causes ALS, but one possible explanation is nerve damage from high levels of glutamate.

Quick facts about Rilutek
  • Drug class: Musculoskeletal
  • Rx status:
  • Generic status: Lower-cost generic available (riluzole)

Used for

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Dosage forms

  • Pill
Tried Rilutek? Write a review!

What to expect when you take Rilutek (riluzole) for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

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Side effect rates for Rilutek (riluzole)

From 633 clinical trials of Rilutek when taken for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (100 mg daily)
  • Loss of energy and strength
  • Nausea
  • Worse lung function
  • Headache
  • Muscle spasms
  • Stuffy nose
  • Stomach pain
  • Depression
  • High blood pressure
  • Weight loss

Risks and Warnings for Rilutek (riluzole)

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    • Higher risk if:
    • History of liver disease
    • Taking other medicines that cause liver injury

    Rilutek (riluzole) can potentially affect the functioning of your liver, which in rare cases, lead to severe liver damage. Your doctor will do regular blood tests while you are taking this medicine to make sure your liver continues to work normally. If you notice unusual symptoms such as fever, rash, lack of appetite, stomach pain, dark urine, or yellowing of your skin or eyes, call your doctor right away.

Common concerns from people taking Rilutek (riluzole)

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Alcohol
  • Avoid alcohol while on Rilutek (riluzole) because it can raise risk of liver problems.
Food
  • Take at least 1 hour before, or 2 hours after a meal.
Sleep
  • Rilutek (riluzole) can make you feel sleepy and dizzy. These side effects are more likely to happen if you're taking other medicines that can also make you feel sleepy, or if you're taking recreational drugs or drinking too much alcohol. Avoid driving or doing other tasks that require concentration until you know how Rilutek (riluzole) affects you. Get up very slowly from a seated or lying down position, as you might feel dizzy and don’t want to fall.
  • Rilutek (riluzole) can make you feel very tired or sleepy. Don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how it affects you.