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What you should know about medicines


Taking your heart failure medicines will help you:

  • live longer
  • breathe easier
  • have more energy
  • have less swelling
  • stay out of the hospital.

Taking your medicine as directed very important. If you do, it will help you feel better and help your heart work with less stress. You will need to take medicines for the rest of your life.

Your health care provider may start you on one or more medicines. He or she may change the dose or add other medicines later. This will depend on your symptoms and how well you respond to the medicines.

It may take many days or weeks to find the right doses and/or combinations of medicines. This will take patience as you and your health care team work together to find the:

  • right medicines for you
  • right amount of each medicine
  • best time of the day to take each medicine.


When you are taking certain heart medicines, drinking grapefruit juice may be harmful. Ask your pharmacist if this applies to you.

If you are worried about how to pay for your medicines, talk with your health care provider. There may be less costly medicines you may take, or financial help available to you.



Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Heart Failure, fourth edition, ISBN 1-931876-31-2

First published: 10/04/2002
Last updated: 08/11/2011

Reviewed by: Allina Health's Patient Education Department experts