Health Guide
Drug Guide

Amlodipine (Oral route)

Pronunciation:

am-LOE-di-peen

Brand Names:

Dosage Forms:

Classifications:

Therapeutic

Cardiovascular Agent

Pharmacologic

Calcium Channel Blocker

Chemical

Dihydropyridine

Uses of This Medicine:

Amlodipine is used alone or together with other medicines to treat angina (chest pain) and high blood pressure (hypertension). High blood pressure adds to the workload of the heart and arteries. If it continues for a long time, the heart and arteries may not function properly. This can damage the blood vessels of the brain, heart, and kidneys, resulting in a stroke, heart failure, or kidney failure. High blood pressure may also increase the risk of heart attacks. These problems may be less likely to occur if blood pressure is controlled.

Amlodipine is a calcium channel blocker. It affects the movement of calcium into the cells of the heart and blood vessels. As a result, amlodipine relaxes blood vessels and increases the supply of blood and oxygen to the heart while reducing its workload.

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.

Before Using This Medicine:

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Children

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of amlodipine to treat high blood pressure in children younger than 6 years of age. Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Older adults

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of amlodipine in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney, liver, or heart problems, which may require caution and an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving amlodipine.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy CategoryExplanation
All TrimestersCAnimal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.

Breast-feeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Other medicines

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

Other interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other medical problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

Proper Use of This Medicine:

Take this medicine exactly as directed even if you feel well and do not notice any chest pain. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. Do not miss any doses.

For patients taking this medicine for high blood pressure:

You may take this medicine with or without food.

Take this medicine at the same time each day.

Dosing

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.

Missed dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Do not take this medicine if it has been more than 12 hours since you missed your last dose.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Precautions While Using This Medicine:

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure this medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects. a

Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may also occur if you exercise or if the weather is hot. Heavy sweating can cause loss of too much water and result in low blood pressure. Use extra care during exercise or hot weather.

If you have been using this medicine regularly for several weeks, do not suddenly stop using it. Stopping suddenly may cause your chest pain or high blood pressure to come back or get worse. Check with your doctor for the best way to reduce gradually the amount you are taking before stopping completely.

Chest pain resulting from exercise or physical exertion is usually reduced or prevented by this medicine. This may tempt you to be too active. Make sure you discuss with your doctor a safe amount of exercise for your medical problem.

After taking a dose of this medicine you may get a headache that lasts for a short time. This should become less noticeable after you have taken this medicine for a while. If this effect continues, or if the headaches are severe, check with your doctor.

In some patients, tenderness, swelling, or bleeding of the gums may appear soon after treatment with this medicine is started. Brushing and flossing your teeth carefully and regularly and massaging your gums may help prevent this. See your dentist regularly to have your teeth cleaned. Check with your doctor or dentist if you have any questions about how to take care of your teeth and gums, or if you notice any tenderness, swelling, or bleeding of your gums.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This especially includes over-the-counter (nonprescription) medicines for appetite control, asthma, colds, cough, hay fever, or sinus problems, since they may increase your blood pressure.

Side Effects of This Medicine:

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common
Swelling of the ankles or feet
Less common
Difficult or labored breathing
dizziness
fast, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
feeling of warmth
redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
shortness of breath
tightness in the chest
wheezing
Rare
Black, tarry stools
bleeding gums
blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
blood in the urine or stools
blurred vision
burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, "pins and needles", or tingling feelings
chest pain or discomfort
chills
cold and clammy skin
cold sweats
confusion
dark yellow urine
cough
diarrhea
dilated neck veins
dizziness or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position
extra heartbeats
extreme fatigue
fainting
fever
itching of the skin
joint or muscle pain
large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
numbness and tingling of the face, fingers, or toes
pain in the arms, legs, or lower back, especially pain in the calves or heels upon exertion
painful or difficult urination
pale, bluish-colored, or cold hands or feet
pinpoint red or purple spots on the skin
red, irritated eyes
redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest
redness, soreness or itching skin
shakiness in the legs, arms, hands, or feet
slow or irregular heartbeat
sore throat
sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
sores, welting, or blisters
sudden sweating
sweating
swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs
swollen glands
trembling or shaking of the hands or feet
unsteadiness or awkwardness
unusual bleeding or bruising
unusual tiredness or weakness
weak or absent pulses in the legs
weakness in the arms, hands, legs, or feet
weight gain
yellow eyes or skin
Incidence not known
Abdominal or stomach pain
clay-colored stools
diarrhea
headache
loss of appetite
nausea
rash
unpleasant breath odor
vomiting of blood
yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common
Acid or sour stomach
belching
heartburn
indigestion
lack or loss of strength
muscle cramps
sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
Rare
Abnormal dreams
anxiety
back pain
bad unusual or unpleasant (after) taste
bleeding gums
blistering, crusting, irritation, itching, or reddening of the skin
bloating
bloody nose
burning feeling in the chest or stomach
burning while urinating
burning, dry, or itching eyes
change in color of the treated skin
change in sense of smell
change in taste
changes in vision
constipation
continuing ringing or buzzing or other unexplained noise in the ears
cracked, dry, or scaly skin
decreased sexual performance or desire
depression
difficulty with moving
difficulty with swallowing
discharge, excessive tearing
double vision
dry mouth
dryness of the skin
excess air or gas in the stomach or intestines
excessive muscle tone
eye pain
feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
feeling of unreality
feeling unusually cold
flushed, dry skin
fruit-like breath odor
full feeling
general feeling of discomfort or illness
hair loss or thinning of the hair
headache, severe and throbbing
hearing loss
hyperventilation
increased appetite
increased hunger
increased sweating
increased thirst
increased urge to urinate during the night
increased urination
irritability
irritation in the mouth
lack of feeling or emotion
loose stools
loss of memory
muscle pains or stiffness
muscle tension or tightness
muscle weakness
nervousness
pain
pains in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
passing gas
problems with memory
redness and swelling of the gums
redness, pain, or swelling of the eye, eyelid, or inner lining of the eyelid
restlessness
runny nose
seeing double
sensation of spinning
sense of detachment from self or body
shakiness and unsteady walk
shivering
sleeplessness
sneezing
stuffy nose
sweating
swollen joints
tenderness in the stomach area
thirst
trouble in holding or releasing urine
trouble sleeping
twitching
unable to sleep
uncaring
unexplained weight loss
unsteadiness, trembling, or other problems with muscle control or coordination
waking to urinate at night
weight loss
Incidence not known
Swelling of the breasts or breast soreness in both females and males

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

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


Last Updated: 10/12/2016

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