Amlodipine/valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide (By mouth)
Amlodipine (am-LOE-di-peen), Hydrochlorothiazide (hye-droe-klor-oh-THYE-a-zide), Valsartan (val-SAR-tan)
Treats high blood pressure. This medicine is a combination of 3 medicines, a calcium channel blocker, an angiotensin receptor blocker, and a thiazide diuretic or " water pill".
Exforge HCTThere may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to amlodipine, valsartan, hydrochlorothiazide, or a sulfonamide antibiotic or stomach medicine (such as sulfamethoxazole, sulfasalazine, sulfisoxazole, Azulfidine®, Bactrim®, Gantrisin®, or Septra®). You should also not use this medicine if you are pregnant or not able to form urine (anuria).
How to Use This Medicine:
- Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
- You may take this medicine with or without food.
- Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet.
- This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
If a dose is missed:
- If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:
- Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
- Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any leftover medicine after you have finished your treatment. You will also need to throw away old medicine after the expiration date has passed.
- Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid:
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using other medicines for high blood pressure, including a diuretic or "water pill" (such as amiloride, spironolactone, triamterene, Aldactone®, Dyrenium®, or Midamor®). Tell your doctor if you are using medicines or supplements containing potassium.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using lithium (Eskalith®, Lithobid®), pain or arthritis medicine called "NSAIDs" (such as aspirin, ibuprofen, Advil®, Aleve®, Celebrex®, or Motrin®), insulin or an oral diabetes medicine (such as glyburide, metformin, Actos®, Avandia®, Glucophage®, Glucotrol®, or Glucovance®), medicine to lower cholesterol (such as cholestyramine, colesevelam, colestipol, Colestid®, or Questran®), a steroid medicine (such as dexamethasone, prednisolone, prednisone, or Medrol®), or medicine to treat seizures (such as carbamazepine, phenobarbital, Carbatrol®, or Tegretol®).
- Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
Warnings While Using This Medicine:
- Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are breastfeeding or if you have had a recent heart attack. Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease, liver disease, diabetes, gout, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE or lupus), heart failure, a mineral imbalance (such as high or low calcium, potassium, magnesium or sodium in the blood), or a history of asthma. Tell your doctor if you are dehydrated or if you recently had severe diarrhea or vomiting.
- Many patients who have high blood pressure will not notice any symptoms of the condition. In fact, many patients feel normal. It is very important that you take your medicine exactly as directed and that you keep your appointments with your doctor even if you feel well.
- This medicine will not cure your high blood pressure, but it does help control it. You must continue to take it as directed if you expect to lower your blood pressure and keep it down. You may have to take high blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life.
- This medicine may make you feel lightheaded, dizzy, or faint, especially when you get up from a lying or sitting position suddenly. Getting up slowly may help. These symptoms are more likely to occur when you begin taking this medicine, or when the dose is increased.
- You may also have dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting 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.
- This medicine may make the symptoms of angina (chest pain) or heart failure worse in some patients. Check with your doctor right away if you are having chest pain or discomfort; dilated neck veins; extreme fatigue; irregular breathing; an irregular heartbeat; shortness of breath; swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs; weight gain; or wheezing.
- Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. You may need to stop using this medicine several days before having surgery or medical tests.
- Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
- Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing.
- Change in how much or how often you urinate, or painful urination.
- Chest pain or shortness of breath.
- Confusion, weakness, and muscle twitching.
- Dry mouth, increased thirst, muscle cramps, nausea, or vomiting.
- Fast, slow, irregular, or pounding heartbeat.
- Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, and body aches.
- Increased hunger or thirst.
- Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting.
- Numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your hands, arms, legs, or feet.
- Rapid weight gain.
- Swelling in your hands, ankles, or feet.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Blurred vision.
- Diarrhea, constipation, or stomach pain or upset.
- Ear pain.
- Headache, or trouble with sleeping.
- Joint or muscle pain.
- Problems having sex.
- Skin rash, itching, or redness.
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
Last Updated: 1/4/2011
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