Exforge

Generic Name: Amlodipine

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Exforge is a medicine used alone or in combination with other medicines to treat high blood pressure. Exforge contains two medicines that work in different ways to reduce your blood pressure: amlodipine and valsartan.

  • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

    How does this medication work?

    Exforge works by blocking a chemical in your body that causes blood vessels to narrow. By blocking this chemical, Exforge relaxes and widens your blood vessels, allowing your blood to flow through with less resistance. This helps to lower your blood pressure.

    What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

    What: By lowering your blood pressure, Exforge may lower your risk of a stroke or a heart attack.

    When: Exforge may start lowering your blood pressure within 2 weeks of treatment. Though you may not feel an improvement or change in the way you feel, it is very important to keep taking your medicine as prescribed to keep your condition under control.

    How do I know it is working?

    Check your blood pressure regularly. Your healthcare provider will also check your blood pressure at every visit. Following an appropriate diet and exercise plan will also affect your blood pressure results.

  • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

    The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

    Exforge can harm your unborn baby. Talk to your healthcare provider about other ways to lower your blood pressure if you plan to become pregnant. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you become pregnant while taking Exforge.

    More common side effects may include: swelling of your legs, ankles, or feet; sore throat; stuffy nose; discomfort when swallowing; upper respiratory infection; dizziness.

    Less common side effects may include:

    Low blood pressure with symptoms such as dizziness or fainting. Low blood pressure is most likely to happen if you also take water pills, are on a low-salt diet, get dialysis treatment, have heart problems, get sick with vomiting or diarrhea, or drink alcohol. If you feel faint or dizzy, lie down and call your healthcare provider right away.

    Possible increased chest pain or risk of a heart attack. If you experience chest pain that gets worse, or that does not go away during treatment with Exforge, get medical help right away.

    Worsening kidney problems with symptoms such as swelling in your feet, ankles, or hands; or unexplained weight gain. If you experience these symptoms, call your healthcare provider.

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Do not take Exforge if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

    Do not take Exforge if you have diabetes and are taking another blood pressure medicine called aliskiren.

  • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

    Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Exforge. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have diabetes; liver, kidney, or heart problems; if you have a history of angioedema (a condition involving swelling of the face, extremities, eyes, lips, and tongue); if you are vomiting or having a lot of diarrhea; or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

    Adults: The recommended starting dose is 5/160 (5 milligrams [mg] of amlodipine and 160 mg of valsartan) once a day. Your healthcare provider will increase your dose as needed, until the desired effect is achieved.

  • How should I take this medication?

    Take Exforge exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop taking Exforge without first talking to your healthcare provider.

    Take Exforge with or without food.

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not become pregnant while taking this medication.

  • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

    If Exforge is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your healthcare provider before combining Exforge with the following: clarithromycin, cyclosporine, itraconazole, ketoconazole, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (such as ibuprofen or naproxen), other blood pressure/heart medicines, potassium supplements, rifampin, ritonavir, salt substitutes containing potassium, simvastatin or other cholesterol lowering medicine, telithromycin, or water pills (such as amiloride, spironolactone, or triamterene).

  • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    Do not take Exforge if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Exforge can harm your unborn baby. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

    If you miss a dose of Exforge, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.

  • How should I store this medication?

    Store at room temperature. Protect from moisture.

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