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Generic Name: lisinopril (lye-SIN-oh-pril)
Brand Name: Examples include Prinivil and Zestril

Zestril may cause injury or death to the fetus if taken during pregnancy. If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor right away. If you are planning to become pregnant, talk with your doctor about other treatment options.


Zestril is used for:

Treating high blood pressure alone or with other medicines. It is used along with other medicines to manage heart failure or improve survival after a heart attack. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Zestril is an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. It works by relaxing blood vessels. This helps to lower blood pressure.

Do NOT use Zestril if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Zestril
  • you have a history of angioedema (swelling of the hands, face, lips, eyes, throat, or tongue; difficulty swallowing or breathing; or hoarseness), including angioedema caused by treatment with an ACE inhibitor
  • you are pregnant
  • the patient is a CHILD with severe kidney problems
  • you are taking a medicine that contains aliskiren and you also have diabetes or kidney problems. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure if a medicine you take contains aliskiren

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Zestril:

Some medical conditions may interact with Zestril. 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 able to become pregnant
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines (including other ACE inhibitors, such as ramipril), foods, or other substances
  • if you have a history of heart problems (eg, heart failure, aortic stenosis), blood vessel problems, blood flow problems, bone marrow problems, diabetes, liver problems, or kidney problems (eg, renal artery stenosis)
  • if you have a history of stroke, recent heart attack, or kidney transplant
  • if you are dehydrated or have low blood volume
  • if you have high blood potassium levels, low blood sodium levels, or are on a low-salt (sodium) diet
  • if you are on dialysis, or are scheduled to have surgery or receive anesthesia
  • if you are receiving treatments to reduce sensitivity to bee or wasp stings
  • if you are taking another medicine to treat high blood pressure

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Zestril. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Dextran sulfate or diuretics (eg, furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide) because they may increase the risk of Zestril's side effects, such as low blood pressure
  • Everolimus or sirolimus because the risk of angioedema may be increased
  • Aliskiren or angiotensin II receptor blockers (eg, valsartan) because the risk of certain side effects (eg, kidney problems, high blood potassium levels, low blood pressure) may be increased
  • Eplerenone, potassium-sparing diuretics (eg, amiloride, spironolactone, triamterene), potassium supplements, or trimethoprim because the risk of high blood potassium levels may be increased
  • Insulin or other oral diabetes medicines (eg, glyburide, metformin) because the risk of low blood sugar may be increased
  • Certain gold-containing medicines (eg, sodium aurothiomalate) because flushing, nausea, vomiting, and low blood pressure may occur
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (eg, ibuprofen, indomethacin, celecoxib) because they may decrease Zestril's effectiveness and the risk of kidney problems may be increased
  • Lithium or thiopurines (eg, azathioprine) because the risk of their side effects may be increased by Zestril

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Zestril 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 Zestril:

Use Zestril as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take Zestril by mouth with or without food.
  • Taking Zestril at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
  • Drink plenty of fluids while taking Zestril. Not drinking enough fluids or excessive sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting can lead to light-headedness or fainting.
  • Continue to take Zestril even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
  • If you miss a dose of Zestril, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next 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 Zestril.

Important safety information:

  • Zestril may cause dizziness, light-headedness, or fainting. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Zestril with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Zestril 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.
  • Zestril may cause a serious side effect called angioedema. The risk may be higher in black patients. Contact your doctor at once if you develop swelling of the hands, face, lips, eyes, throat, or tongue; difficulty swallowing or breathing; or hoarseness.
  • Severe and sometimes fatal liver problems have happened with Zestril. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor.
  • Zestril may not work as well in black patients. Contact your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse.
  • Zestril may cause a dry, unproductive cough. If caused by Zestril, this symptom usually stops after treatment with Zestril is stopped.
  • Dehydration, excessive sweating, vomiting, or diarrhea may increase the risk of low blood pressure. Contact your health care provider at once if any of these occur.
  • Check with your doctor before you use a salt substitute or a product that has potassium in it.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take Zestril before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • 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 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.
  • Diabetes patients - Zestril may affect your blood sugar. Check blood sugar levels closely. Ask your doctor before you change the dose of your diabetes medicine.
  • Lab tests, including blood pressure, blood electrolyte levels, heart function, or kidney or liver function, may be performed while you use Zestril. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use Zestril with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
  • Zestril should not be used in CHILDREN younger than 6 years old; safety and effectiveness in these children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY AND BREAST-FEEDING: Zestril may cause birth defects or fetal death if you take it while you are pregnant. If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor right away. It is not known if Zestril is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Zestril.

Possible side effects of Zestril:

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:

Cough; dizziness; headache.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing or swallowing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the hands, eyes, mouth, face, lips, or tongue; hoarseness); chest pain; decreased urination; irregular heartbeat; shortness of breath; stomach pain (with or without nausea or vomiting); symptoms of infection (eg, fever, chills, persistent sore throat); symptoms of liver problems (eg, dark urine, loss of appetite, pale stools, yellowing of the skin or eyes); symptoms of low blood pressure (eg, fainting, severe dizziness, light-headedness).

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.

Proper storage of Zestril:

Store Zestril at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Do not freeze. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Zestril out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Zestril, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Zestril 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 Zestril 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 Zestril. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to Zestril. 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 Zestril.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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.

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