Lotensin

Generic Name: Benazepril

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Lotensin is a medicine known as an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor, used alone or in combination with other medicines to treat high blood pressure.

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

    How does this medication work?

    Lotensin works by blocking a chemical in your body that causes blood vessels to narrow. By blocking this chemical, Lotensin 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, Lotensin may lower your risk of a stroke or a heart attack.

    When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. It is important that you take Lotensin exactly as your healthcare provider has prescribed. 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 may 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.

    Lotensin 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 Lotensin.

    More common side effects may include: headache, dizziness.

    Less common side effects may include:

    Serious allergic reaction with symptoms such as extreme swelling of your face, lips, tongue, throat, or gut (causing severe abdominal [stomach area] pain). You may have an increased risk of experiencing these symptoms if you have a history of angioedema (a condition involving swelling of the face, extremities, eyes, lips, and tongue) or if you are African American.

    Low blood pressure with symptoms such as lightheadedness, especially during the first few days of taking Lotensin. Dehydration, excessive sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting can lead to an excessive fall in your blood pressure, which can cause lightheadedness and possible fainting.

    Low blood neutrophil (type of blood cells that fight infections) levels with symptoms of an infection (such as sore throat or fever).

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Do not take Lotensin if you are allergic to it, any of its ingredients, or if you have a history of angioedema related to previous treatment with similar medicines.

  • 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 Lotensin. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have diabetes; kidney, liver, or heart problems; plan to undergo surgery or receive anesthesia; or if you have a history of angioedema.

  • 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 10 milligrams once a day. Your healthcare provider will adjust your dose based on your previous blood pressure medication and will increase your dose as needed, until the desired effect is achieved.

    Children ages ≥6 years: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for your child, based on his/her weight.

    If you have kidney impairment, your healthcare provider may adjust your dose appropriately.

  • How should I take this medication?

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

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not become pregnant while taking this medication.

    Do not become dehydrated. Drink adequate amount of fluids while you are taking Lotensin.

    Do not take potassium supplements or salt substitutes that contain potassium without first talking to your healthcare provider.

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

    If Lotensin 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 Lotensin with the following: dextran, diabetes medicines (such as insulin), injectable gold (sodium aurothiomalate), lithium, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (such as ibuprofen or naproxen), potassium supplements, salt substitutes containing potassium, or water pills (such as amiloride, spironolactone, or triamterene).

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

    Do not take Lotensin if you are pregnant. Lotensin can harm your unborn baby. Lotensin can be found in your breast milk if you take it while breastfeeding. 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 Lotensin, 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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