Uroxatral (Alfuzosin) – Oral

What Is Uroxatral?

Uroxatral (alfuzosin) is a prescription medication used to improve urination in adult men with benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH, enlarged prostate). It is in a class of drugs called alpha blockers

Alpha blockers are commonly used to treat high blood pressure, although Uroxatral has not been researched in treating high blood pressure. Uroxatral works by relaxing the muscles in the bladder and prostate to improve urine flow. It does not shrink the prostate or change prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood levels. It is available by prescription as a 10 milligram (mg), round, three-layer tablet: one white layer between two yellow layers.

Drug Facts

Generic Name: Alfuzosin

Brand Name: Uroxatral

Drug Availability: Prescription

Therapeutic Classification: Benign prostatic hypertrophy agent

Available Generically: Yes

Controlled Substance: N/A

Administration Route: Oral

Active Ingredient: Alfuzosin hydrochloride

Dosage Form: Extended-release tablet

What Is Uroxatral Used For?

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Uroxatral to improve the signs and symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia in adult men.

Uroxatral (Alfuzosin HCL) Drug Information - Illustration by Zoe Hansen

Verywell / Zoe Hansen

How to Take Uroxatral

Use this medicine exactly as directed by your healthcare provider. Follow all the directions on your prescription label.

When taking Uroxatral, follow these instructions:

  • Take once daily after the same meal each day. Food aids its absorption into the body, so do not take on an empty stomach.
  • Swallow the tablet whole. Do not crush, chew, or break. 

Ask your healthcare provider if you do not understand how to take your medications.

Storage

Store Uroxatral in a tightly closed container at room temperature (59 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit). Keep away from heat, moisture, and light and out of the reach of children and pets. When traveling, transport Uroxatral in your carry-on or checked baggage with its original label.

Off-Label Uses

Healthcare providers may prescribe alfuzosin off-label for medical conditions that the medications are not approved to treat but have proven to help. 

Alfuzosin can be prescribed off-label for bladder outlet obstruction in women, including kidney stones).

How Long Does Uroxatral Take to Work?

Uroxatral starts working right away, but you may have to wait four to six weeks to see its full effects.

What Are the Side Effects of Uroxatral?

This is not a complete list of side effects, and others may occur. A medical professional can advise you on side effects. If you experience other effects, contact your pharmacist or a medical professional. You may report side effects to the FDA at www.fda.gov/medwatch or 800-FDA-1088.

Common Side Effects

Common side effects of Uroxatral include:

Severe Side Effects

Call your healthcare provider right away if you have serious side effects. Call 911 immediately if you think you or someone else is having a medical emergency. Serious side effects can include:

  • New or worsening chest pain
  • Upper stomach pain
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dark urine or clay-colored stools
  • Jaundice (yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes)
  • Erection that is painful or lasts more than four hours
  • Low blood pressure or feeling light-headed after standing up
  • Fainting
  • Liver toxicity
  • Intraoperative floppy iris syndrome (a structural change in the pupil that affects cataract surgery)
  • Low platelets in the blood
  • Angioedema (a severe skin condition that causes swelling under the skin)
  • Toxic epidermal necrolysis (a potentially life-threatening skin disorder that causes skin cell death)

Report Side Effects

Uroxatral may cause other side effects. Call your healthcare provider if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

If you experience a serious side effect, you or your provider may send a report to the FDA's MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting Program or by phone (800-332-1088).

Dosage: How Much Uroxatral Should I Take?

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The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (extended release tablets):
    • For benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH):
      • Adults—10 milligrams (mg) once a day.
      • Children—Use is not recommended.

Missed Dose

Do not change your dose or stop taking Uroxatral without talking to your healthcare provider. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can and then resume your next dose at its regular time. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not try to “double-up” your dose by taking two doses at once.

Overdose: What Happens If I Take Too Much Uroxatral?

Uroxatral overdose can happen when one takes too much of it. Overdose symptoms include severely low blood pressure, which requires treatment in a hospital setting.

What Happens If I Overdose on Uroxatral

If you think you or someone else may have overdosed on Uroxatral, call a healthcare provider or the Poison Control Center (800-222-1222).

If someone collapses or isn't breathing after taking Uroxatral, call 911 immediately.

Precautions

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It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly and to check for unwanted effects.

Do not use this medicine if you are taking ketoconazole (Nizoral®), itraconazole (Sporanox®), or ritonavir (Norvir®).

Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may occur after you use this medicine, especially when you get up from a lying or sitting position. Getting up slowly may help lessen this problem. If you feel dizzy, lie down so you do not faint. Then sit for a few moments before standing to prevent the dizziness from returning.

This medicine may cause some people to become dizzy or less alert than they are normally. Do not drive or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.

Tell your eye doctor (ophthalmologist) that you have used or are using this medicine before cataract surgery or any other eye procedure. This medicine may cause a serious eye problem called Intraoperative Floppy Iris Syndrome (IFIS).

Call your doctor right away if you experience a prolonged erection. This is an extremely rare side effect, but if it goes untreated, can result in permanent erectile dysfunction (impotence).

Check with your doctor right away if you have arm, back or jaw pain, chest pain or discomfort, chest tightness or heaviness, fast or irregular heartbeat, nausea, or sweating.

Benign prostatic hyperplasia can have the same symptoms as prostate cancer. They may also often occur together. Your doctor may test for the presence of the cancer before you start using this medicine.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.

What Are the Reasons I Shouldn’t Take Uroxatral?

Avoid Uroxatral if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients or if you:

  • Have moderate to severe liver disease (increased alfuzosin blood levels)
  • Are taking antifungal drugs (e.g., ketoconazole or itraconazole)
  • Are taking HIV drugs called protease inhibitors (e.g., ritonavir)
  • Are already taking an alpha blocker for either high blood pressure or prostate problems 
  • Are under the age of 18

Get emergency medical help immediately if you have signs of an allergic reaction like hives, difficulty breathing, or swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

What Other Medications Interact With Uroxatral?

Watch out for certain medications when taking Uroxatral as they can affect how it works in the body. Some medicines can cause unwanted effects when used with alfuzosin, and some medicines should not be used simultaneously.

Potent CYP3A4 Inhibitors

These medications inhibit an enzyme called CYP3A4 in the body. Uroxatral should not be used with medicines in this group as the combination would lead to increased alfuzosin blood levels.

Potent CYP3A4 inhibitors include:

  • Antifungal medicines like Nizoral (ketoconazole), Vfend (voriconazole), Noxafil (posaconazole), and Sporanox (itraconazole)
  • Hepatitis C or human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) medications like Tybost (cobicistat), Norvir (ritonavir), and Reyataz (atazanavir)

Other Alpha Blockers

Alfuzosin is an alpha blocker. Avoid use in combination with other drugs that are similar to it. This combination could increase the risk of very low blood pressure, which can lead to dizziness or fainting. Your healthcare provider may need to adjust your medications to minimize this risk. Examples include: 

  • Cardura (doxazosin) 
  • Minipress (prazosin) 
  • Rapaflo (silodosin) 
  • Flomax (tamsulosin)
  • Hytrin (terazosin)

Antihypertensive Medications and Nitrates

There may be an increased risk of postural hypotension (also called orthostatic hypotension, a faint feeling from your blood pressure lowering when you suddenly sit up from lying down or stand from sitting) when taking Uroxatral at the same time as antihypertensive medications or nitrates. Examples of the medications to avoid are diltiazem and atenolol.

Phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE5) Inhibitors

PDE5 inhibitors (e.g., sildenafil, tadalafil) are medicines used in erectile dysfunction. Both PDE-5 inhibitors and alpha blockers can lower blood pressure. Taking them together can cause dangerously low blood pressure.

Biologics

Biologics are medications derived from natural sources used to treat various conditions, including cancer. Using these with Uroxatral may increase blood levels of alfuzosin and cause heart issues like QT prolongation and abnormal heart rhythm. Examples of biologics include: 

  • Zykadia (ceritinib)
  • Zydelig (idelalisib)
  • Zokinvy (lonafarnib)
  • Tukysa (tucatinib)

Antibiotics  

Antibiotics treat bacterial infections. Using these with Uroxatral may increase blood levels of alfuzosin and cause heart issues like QT prolongation and abnormal heart rhythm. Avoid Chloromycetin an Viceton (chloramphenicol) and Biaxin (clarithromycin) when taking alfuzosin.

This is not a complete list of all medications that may affect how Uroxatral works. Tell your healthcare provider or pharmacist about all your current medicines and supplements. Keep them updated about any medication you start or stop taking.

What Medications Are Similar?

Medications similar to Uroxatral include:

  • Hytrin (terazosin)
  • Flomax (tamsulosin)
  • Avodart (dutasteride)

Terazosin

Hytrin (terazosin) is an alpha blocker that treats enlarged prostate and high blood pressure. It relaxes the muscles in the bladder and prostate to improve urine flow. Unlike Uroxatral, terazosin does not need to be taken with regard to food. However, you should take it at bedtime due to side effects such as orthostasis, dizziness, headache, and fatigue. Terazosin’s dose also has to be titrated, meaning your provider starts you at the lowest dose and increases it slowly.

Tamsulosin

Flomax (tamsulosin) is also an alpha blocker used to improve urination in men with an enlarged prostate. It relaxes the muscles in the bladder and prostate to improve urine flow. Tamsulosin doesn’t require renal adjustment or caution like Uroxatral does. It is taken 30 minutes after the same meal each day, similar to Uroxatral.


Dutasteride

Avodart (dutasteride) is in a class of medications called 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors. It treats BPH in men with an enlarged prostate. It works by limiting certain hormones to shrink the prostate and ultimately improve urinary flow. It is sometimes used in combination with tamsulosin to treat BPH.

It may take up to six months or longer before you receive the full benefit of taking dutasteride. It slowly shrinks the prostate or changes blood levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). Your healthcare provider will determine how long to treat you with this medicine.

Dutasteride is not for use in pregnant women or who may become pregnant. It could seriously harm the baby if exposed during pregnancy. Women in this category should avoid direct contact with dutasteride as it can be absorbed through the skin. Any woman who accidentally comes into contact with this medication should wash the area with soap and water.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is Uroxatral used for?

    Uroxatral is used in adult men to treat the symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia. It helps relax the muscles in the prostate and bladder, which may relieve BPH symptoms and improve urine flow.

  • What are the side effects of Uroxatral?

    The side effects of alfuzosin you are likely to experience are:

    All the side effects of Uroxatral are not listed above. Talk to your healthcare provider about any side effect(s) that bothers you. For more information, ask your doctor or pharmacist.

  • Who should not take Uroxatral?

    Avoid taking Uroxatral if you have liver issues or are:

    • Taking antifungals like ketoconazole
    • Taking HIV drugs called protease inhibitors 
    • Already taking another alpha blocker
    • Pregnant or may become pregnant
    • Under the age of 18
    • Allergic to Uroxatral or any of its ingredients

    Talk to your healthcare provider before starting or stopping any medicines.

How Can I Stay Healthy While Taking Uroxatral?

As the male body ages, the prostate enlarges from exposure to male hormones. As a result, older men are affected by benign prostatic hyperplasia, which is the noncancerous growth of the prostate. Due to the location of the prostate, its enlargement leads to symptoms such as: 

  • Urine urgency
  • Increased urine frequency 
  • Getting up to urinate multiple times during the night
  • Difficulty starting the urine stream
  • Changes to urine flow

Taking cold and allergy medications, such as decongestants and antihistamines, can worsen these symptoms. Talk to your pharmacist for advice on choosing cold and flu medicines.

Prostate cancer and BPH can have similar symptoms. See your healthcare provider if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. Your healthcare provider may examine your prostate gland and do a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test to check for prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is more severe and needs a different treatment.

Alfuzosin lowers blood pressure and may cause fainting, dizziness, or light-headedness. Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position. Dizziness is more likely to occur if you take heart or blood pressure medications. Check your blood pressure often.

Drinking alcohol can also make dizziness worse. It could be dangerous to mix alcohol with this medication. Avoid driving or hazardous activities until you know how Uroxatral will affect you. If you feel dizzy or light-headed, lie down with your legs and feet elevated. If your symptoms do not improve, call your healthcare provider.

Alfuzosin can also affect your pupils. If you have cataract surgery planned, tell your eye surgeon ahead of time that you use this medicine.

Remember to take Uroxatral once daily, after the same meal as directed by your healthcare provider. If you keep forgetting to take it, consider setting alarms or reminders. Ask your doctor or pharmacist any questions you might have about the medication.

Medical Disclaimer

Verywell Health's drug information is meant for educational purposes only and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a healthcare professional. Consult your healthcare provider before taking any new medication(s). IBM Watson Micromedex provides some of the drug content, as indicated on the page.

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4 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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  2. Food and Drug Administration. Uroxatral Label.

  3. Hitzeman N, Williams S. Alpha blockers to speed ureteral stone passage. Am Fam Physician. 2015. PMID: 25822267

  4. Athanasopoulos A, Gyftopoulos K, Giannitsas K, et al. Effect of alfuzosin on female primary bladder neck obstruction. Int Urogynecol J Pelvic Floor Dysfunct. 2009 Feb;20(2):217-22. doi: 10.1007/s00192-008-0749-x.