Generic Name: amlodipine (am-LOE-di-peen)
Brand Name: Norvasc
Amlodipine is used for:
Treating high blood pressure and angina (chest pain). It may be used alone or with other medicines. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Amlodipine is a calcium channel blocker. It works by widening blood vessels to reduce chest pain and high blood pressure. It also widens arteries in the heart, which increases blood flow to the heart.
Do NOT use amlodipine if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in amlodipine
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using amlodipine:
Some medical conditions may interact with amlodipine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have low blood pressure
- if you have a history of heart problems (eg, heart failure, aortic stenosis, coronary artery disease), or liver problems
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with amlodipine. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Sildenafil because the risk of low blood pressure may be increased
- Azole antifungals (eg, itraconazole, ketoconazole), diltiazem, HIV protease inhibitors (eg, ritonavir), or vasopressin receptor antagonists (eg, conivaptan) because they may increase the risk of amlodipine's side effects
- Cyclosporine or simvastatin because the risk of their side effects may be increased by amlodipine
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if amlodipine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use amlodipine:
Use amlodipine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- An extra patient leaflet is available with amlodipine. Talk to your pharmacist if you have questions about this information.
- Take amlodipine by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
- Taking amlodipine at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
- Continue to take amlodipine even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
- If you miss a dose of amlodipine, take it as soon as possible. If it has been more than 12 hours since you missed your last dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use amlodipine.
Important safety information:
- Amlodipine may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use amlodipine with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
- Amlodipine may cause dizziness, light-headedness, or fainting; alcohol, hot weather, exercise, or fever may increase these effects. To prevent them, sit up or stand slowly, especially in the morning. Sit or lie down at the first sign of any of these effects.
- Patients who take medicine for high blood pressure often feel tired or run down for a few weeks after starting treatment. Be sure to take your medicine even if you may not feel "normal." Tell your doctor if you develop any new symptoms.
- If you are taking amlodipine for angina, it will not relieve the pain of an acute attack if it is taken at the time of an acute attack. It prevents or reduces the number of angina attacks only if you take it on regular schedule.
- If you have high blood pressure, do not use nonprescription products that contain stimulants. These products may include diet pills or cold medicines. Contact your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.
- While you are using amlodipine, it is important to brush and floss your teeth carefully to reduce swelling and tenderness of your gums.
- Although rare, amlodipine has been known to increase chest pain and increase the risk of a heart attack, especially in patients with severe heart disease.
- Lab tests, including blood pressure checks, may be performed while you use amlodipine. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Use amlodipine with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
- Amlodipine should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN younger than 6 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of taking amlodipine while you are pregnant. It is not known if amlodipine is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking amlodipine.
Possible side effects of amlodipine:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Dizziness; drowsiness; fatigue; flushing; nausea; stomach pain; weakness.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); fainting; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; pounding in the chest; severe or persistent dizziness; shortness of breath; swelling of the feet or legs; symptoms of heart attack (eg, chest, jaw, or left arm pain; numbness or tingling of an arm or leg; sudden, severe headache or vomiting); tender, bleeding, or swollen gums; worsening angina pain (eg, longer, more often, more severe); yellowing of the eyes or skin.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include dizziness; fainting or light-headedness, especially when standing; very fast heart rate.Proper storage of amlodipine:
Store amlodipine at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep amlodipine out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about amlodipine, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Amlodipine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take amlodipine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about amlodipine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to amlodipine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your health care provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using amlodipine.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.