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Telmisartan

Generic name: telmisartan (TEL mi SAR tan)
Brand name: Micardis
Dosage forms: oral tablet (20 mg; 40 mg; 80 mg)
Drug class: Angiotensin receptor blockers

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com on Apr 26, 2021. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is telmisartan?

Telmisartan is an angiotensin II receptor blocker (sometimes called an ARB) that is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). Lowering blood pressure may lower your risk of a stroke or heart attack.

Telmisartan is also used to reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack, or death from heart problems in people who are at least 55 years old with risk factors for serious heart disorders.

Telmisartan may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Warnings

Do not use if you are pregnant. Stop using telmisartan and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant.

If you have diabetes, do not take telmisartan with any medicine that contains aliskiren (a blood pressure medicine).

Before taking this medicine

You should not use telmisartan if you are allergic to it.

If you have diabetes, do not take telmisartan with any medicine that contains aliskiren (a blood pressure medicine).

You may also need to avoid taking telmisartan with aliskiren if you have kidney disease.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • a heart condition other than one being treated with telmisartan;

  • liver disease;

  • kidney disease (or if you are on dialysis); or

  • if you are on a low-salt diet.

Do not use if you are pregnant. Stop using the medicine and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. Telmisartan can cause injury or death to the unborn baby if you take the medicine during your second or third trimester.

If you plan to get pregnant, ask your doctor for a safer medicine to use before and during pregnancy. Having high blood pressure during pregnancy may cause complications in the mother and the baby.

You should not breastfeed while using telmisartan.

How should I take telmisartan?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose. Use the medicine exactly as directed.

Take telmisartan at the same time each day, with or without food.

Call your doctor if you are sick with vomiting or diarrhea, or if you are sweating more than usual. You can easily become dehydrated while taking telmisartan.

It may take 2 to 4 weeks before your blood pressure is under control. Keep using this medicine as directed, even if you feel well. High blood pressure often has no symptoms.

You may need to use blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life. Treatment may also include diet, exercise, lowering cholesterol, not smoking, and controlling diabetes.

Your blood pressure will need to be checked often. Your liver or kidney function may also need to be checked.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the tablets in their original package or container, along with any packet or canister of moisture-absorbing preservative.

Keep this medicine in its original packaging until you're ready to take a tablet. Tear or cut one tablet blister from the package, peel back the paper liner, and push the tablet through the foil.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking telmisartan?

Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy.

Do not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes, unless your doctor has told you to.

Telmisartan side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Also call your doctor at once if you have:

  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out;

  • little or no urination;

  • swelling in your feet or ankles, rapid weight gain;

  • unusual pain or tightness in your lower body;

  • a skin ulcer; or

  • high potassium level--nausea, weakness, tingly feeling, chest pain, irregular heartbeats, loss of movement.

Common side effects may include:

  • stuffy nose, sinus pain;

  • back pain; or

  • diarrhea.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Telmisartan dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Hypertension:

Initial dose: 40 mg orally once a day

Maintenance dose: 40 to 80 mg orally once a day

Comments: Most of the antihypertensive effect is present within 2 weeks; maximum blood pressure reduction at a given dose is generally observed within 4 weeks of starting that dose.

Usual Adult Dose for Cardiovascular Risk Reduction:

80 mg orally once a day

Comments:
-It is unknown whether doses lower than 80 mg are effective in reducing the risk of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.
-When initiating this drug for cardiovascular risk reduction, monitoring of blood pressure is recommended, and if appropriate, adjustment of other medications that lower blood pressure.

Use: Reduction of risk of myocardial infarction, stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes in patients 55 years or older at high risk of developing major cardiovascular events who are unable to take angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. High risk for cardiovascular events can be evidenced by a history of coronary artery disease, peripheral arterial disease, stroke, transient ischemic attack, or high-risk diabetes (insulin-dependent or non-insulin dependent) with evidence of end-organ damage.

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What other drugs will affect telmisartan?

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may affect telmisartan, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.