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Olmesartan

IMPORTANT WARNING:

Do not take olmesartan if you are pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking olmesartan, call your doctor immediately. Olmesartan may harm the fetus.

Why is this medication prescribed?

Olmesartan is used alone or in combination with other medications to treat high blood pressure. Olmesartan is in a class of medications called angiotensin II receptor antagonists. It works by blocking the action of certain chemicals that tighten the blood vessels, so blood flows more smoothly.

How should this medicine be used?

Olmesartan comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day with or without food. To help you remember to take olmesartan, take it around the same time every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take olmesartan exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

Your doctor may start you on a low dose of olmesartan and gradually increase your dose, not more than once every 2 weeks.

Olmesartan controls high blood pressure but does not cure it. It may take up to 2 weeks before you feel the full benefit of olmesartan. Continue to take olmesartan even if you feel well. Do not stop taking olmesartan without talking to your doctor.

Other uses for this medicine

Olmesartan is sometimes also used to treat heart failure. Talk to your doctor about the possible risks of using this medication for your condition.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

What special precautions should I follow?

Before taking olmesartan,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to olmesartan or any other medications.
  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking. Be sure to mention diuretics ('water pills'). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
  • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had heart failure; kidney disease; or angioedema, a condition that causes difficulty swallowing or breathing and painful swelling of the the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs.
  • tell your doctor if you are planning to become pregnant or are breast-feeding.
  • you should know that olmesartan may cause your blood pressure to drop too low, especially after your first dose. Your doctor may want you to take your first dose in his office so he can see how you react to this medication.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

If your doctor prescribes a low-salt or low-sodium diet, follow these directions carefully.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Olmesartan may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if this symptom is severe or does not go away:

  • dizziness

Some side effects can be serious. The following symptoms are uncommon, but if you experience any of them, call your doctor immediately:

  • swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • hoarseness
  • difficulty swallowing or breathing

Olmesartan may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.

In case of emergency/overdose

In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.

Symptoms of overdose may include:

  • fainting
  • dizziness
  • blurred vision
  • upset stomach
  • fast or slow heartbeat

What other information should I know?

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your blood pressure should be checked regularly to determine your response to olmesartan.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

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Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT
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