What is AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
(AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID) This product is used to treat high blood pressure. Lowering high blood pressure helps prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems. This product contains 3 medications: amlodipine, valsartan, and hydrochlorothiazide. Amlodipine is a calcium channel blocker, and valsartan is an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB). They both work by relaxing blood vessels so blood can flow more easily. Hydrochlorothiazide is called a "water pill" (diuretic) and causes your body to get rid of extra salt and water by making more urine.
How should I use AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
Read the Patient Information Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you start taking this product and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily. If you take this drug too close to bedtime, you may need to wake up to urinate. It is best to take this medication at least 4 hours before your bedtime. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Take this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day. It may take up to 2 weeks before you get the full benefit of this product. Keep taking this product even if you feel well. Most people with high blood pressure do not feel sick. If you also take certain drugs to lower your cholesterol (bile acid-binding resins such as cholestyramine, colestipol), take amlodipine/valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide at least 4 hours before or at least 4 to 6 hours after these medications. Tell your doctor if you do not get better or if you get worse (your blood pressure readings remain high or increase).
What should I tell my health care provider before I take AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
Before taking this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to amlodipine, valsartan, or hydrochlorothiazide; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney disease, liver disease, dehydration, untreated electrolytes imbalance (such as high/low potassium, low magnesium, high calcium), gout, lupus, certain heart valve conditions (aortic or mitral stenosis), skin cancer. This drug may make you dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis). Severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting can increase the risk for lightheadedness or dehydration. Report prolonged diarrhea or vomiting to your doctor. To prevent dehydration, drink plenty of fluids unless your doctor directs you otherwise. If you have diabetes, this product may affect your blood sugar. Check your blood sugar regularly as directed and share the results with your doctor. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medication, exercise program, or diet. This product may affect your potassium levels. Before using potassium supplements or salt substitutes that contain potassium, consult your doctor or pharmacist. This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. It may also increase your risk for skin cancer, especially if you take it for a long time. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Tell your doctor right away if you get sunburned, have skin blisters/redness, or notice new or changed moles/skin lesions. Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products). Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially dizziness and change in the amount of urine (kidney problems). Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You should not become pregnant while using this medication. Valsartan may harm an unborn baby. If you become pregnant, talk to your doctor right away about the risks and benefits of this medication. See also Warning section. It is unknown if valsartan passes into breast milk. Hydrochlorothiazide and amlodipine pass into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
What may interact with AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
See also How to Use and Precautions sections. Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval. Some products that may interact with this drug include: aliskiren, dofetilide, lithium, drugs that may increase the level of potassium in the blood (such as sparsentan, ACE inhibitors including benazepril/lisinopril, birth control pills containing drospirenone). Some products have ingredients that could raise your blood pressure. Tell your pharmacist what products you are using, and ask how to use them safely (especially cough-and-cold products, diet aids, or NSAIDs such as ibuprofen/naproxen). This product may interfere with certain laboratory tests, possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
What should I watch for while using AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
Valsartan can cause serious (possibly fatal) harm to an unborn baby if used during pregnancy. It is important to prevent pregnancy while taking this medication. Consult your doctor for more details and to discuss the use of reliable forms of birth control while taking this medication. If you are planning pregnancy, become pregnant, or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor right away.
What if I miss a dose of AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
What side effects may I notice from receiving AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
Dizziness, lightheadedness, or headache may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. To reduce the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position. Remember that this medication has been prescribed because your doctor has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects. This product may cause dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. Tell your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of dehydration or electrolyte imbalance, including: extreme thirst, very dry mouth, muscle cramps/weakness, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, confusion. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: fainting, severe tiredness, big toe/joint pain, swelling hands/ankles/feet, symptoms of a high potassium blood level (such as muscle weakness, slow/irregular heartbeat), signs of infection (such as sore throat that doesn't go away, fever, chills), signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine). Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: decrease in vision, eye pain. Some people who already have severe heart disease may rarely develop worsening chest pain or a heart attack after starting this medication or increasing the dose. Get medical help right away if you experience: worsening chest pain, symptoms of a heart attack (such as chest/jaw/left arm pain, shortness of breath, unusual sweating). A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch. In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Where should I keep AMLODIPINE/VALSARTAN/HCTHIAZID?
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets. Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.