Amlodipine/valsartan (By mouth)

Introduction

Amlodipine (am-LOE-di-peen), Valsartan (val-SAR-tan)

Treats high blood pressure. This medicine is a combination of a calcium channel blocker and an angiotensin receptor blocker.

Brand Name(s)

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

Exforge

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to amlodipine or valsartan, or if you are pregnant.

How to Use This Medicine

Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • This medicine should not be the first medicine you use to treat your condition. It is meant to be used only after you have tried other medicines that have not worked or have caused unwanted side effects.
  • You may take this medicine with or without food.
  • Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using other medicines for high blood pressure, including a diuretic or "water pill" (such as amiloride, spironolactone, triamterene, Aldactone®, Dyrenium®, or Midamor®). Tell your doctor if you are also using medicines or supplements containing potassium.
  • Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are breastfeeding, or if you have liver disease, kidney disease, congestive heart failure, heart problems, or recently had a heart attack. Tell your doctor if you are dehydrated or have recently had severe diarrhea or vomiting. Also tell your doctor if you are having surgery or dialysis treatment.
  • This medicine may make you feel lightheaded or dizzy. Getting up slowly may help. Also, avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
  • If you stop using this medicine, your blood pressure may go up. High blood pressure usually has no symptoms. Even if you feel well, do not stop using the medicine without asking your doctor.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
  • Change in how much or how often you urinate, painful urination.
  • Chest pain or shortness of breath.
  • Fast, slow, irregular, or pounding heartbeat.
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, and body aches.
  • Increased hunger or thirst.
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting.
  • Lumps on your neck, armpits, or groin.
  • Muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness.
  • Numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your hands, arms, legs, or feet.
  • Rapid weight gain.
  • Red or dark brown urine.
  • Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
  • Tremors.
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising.
  • Yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes.

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Changes in vision.
  • Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain or upset.
  • Ear pain.
  • Joint pain or swelling.
  • Problems having sex.
  • Skin rash, itching, or redness.
  • Tiredness.

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Review Date: 2011-02-04 Reviewed By: Keywords: ,
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