Amlodipine is used on its own or together with other medicines to keep your blood pressure under control. This medicine relaxes your blood vessels and this helps to lower your blood pressure.
It may also be used to treat chest pain and other conditions as decided by your doctor.
Take Amlodipine exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
You may take this medicine with or without food. Try to take it at the same time each day.
Amlodipine must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better. Do not stop taking it unless instructed otherwise by your doctor, as stopping it suddenly may worsen your condition.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Alert your doctor if you have the following
- very low blood pressure
- narrowing of the heart valves
- heart failure after a heart attack
as Amlodipine may not be suitable for you.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- heart failure
- hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy (abnormally thick heart muscle)
- severe obstructive coronary artery disease (disorder of the blood vessels of the heart)
- liver disease
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving Amlodipine to a child or elderly person. Children and elderly people may be more sensitive to the side effects.
Do not suddenly stop your other medicines for high blood pressure or heart disease, as stopping it abruptly could worsen your condition. Your doctor will advise you on how to manage your dose depending on your condition.
If you are going for an operation, including minor surgery and dental work, inform your doctor or dentist that you are taking Amlodipine.
Why is it important to keep my appointments with the doctor?
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly. Your blood pressure may rise to unsafe levels without you noticing it. He may also need to do routine blood tests while you are being treated with Amlodipine.
What lifestyle changes can I make to improve my blood pressure?
Regular exercise and eating a healthy diet will help lower your blood pressure and improve your overall health. Engage in physical activity (e.g. walking) at least 30 to 60 minutes on most days of the week. If you have not exercised for a long time, start with light exercises such as slow walks. Speak to your doctor about what type of exercise would be suitable for you. Follow a healthy diet plan by eating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products and reduce your intake of foods high in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium. Cutting down on deep-fried foods and using less salt when cooking can kick-start your healthy diet.
If you smoke, you should try to quit. Smoking is harmful to your blood pressure, heart and overall health. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about ways to kick your smoking habit.
Try to keep stress levels under control as stress will cause your blood pressure to go up.
Amlodipine may cause drowsiness or dizziness. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.
This medicine may cause swelling of the ankles, feet or hand. To reduce swelling in the ankles or feet, elevate your legs by putting a pillow under your feet when lying down.
To minimise gum swelling, observe oral hygiene by regularly brushing and flossing your teeth.
Other side effects include any of the following: double vision, ringing in the ears, nausea, stomach discomfort, constipation, skin rash, muscle pain, tiredness, and impotence.
Some side effects may be serious, although they are not common. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience:
- swelling of face, lips, tongue or throat
- difficulty in breathing
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- worsening chest pain
- yellowing of the eyes or skin
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- other medicines for high blood pressure or heart disease e.g. verapamil, diltiazem
- cholesterol-lowering medicine e.g. simvastatin
- medicines to treat fungal infection e.g. itraconazole, ketoconazole
- antibiotics e.g. erythromycin, clarithromycin
- medicines for HIV infection e.g. indinavir, ritonavir
- medicine for TB (lung infection known as tuberculosis) e.g. rifampicin
- medicines used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. ciclosporin, tacrolimus
- injectable medicine for malignant hyperthermia (disease causing fast rise in body temperature) e.g. dantrolene
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Amlodipine.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Avoid grapefruit and excessive consumption (more than 1 litre a day) of grapefruit juice.
Avoid St. John’s wort.
Cut down on your salt intake. This may help lower your blood pressure and improve your overall health. Speak to your doctor or dietitian about ways to cut down on your salt intake.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.