Brand names: Lotrel
Lotrel is used in the treatment of high blood pressure. It is a combination medicine that is used when treatment with a single drug has not been successful or has caused side effects.
One component, amlodipine, is a calcium channel blocker. It eases the workload of the heart by slowing down the passage of nerve impulses and hence the contractions of the heart muscle. This improves blood flow through the heart and throughout the body and reduces blood pressure. The other component, benazepril, is an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. It works by preventing the transformation of a hormone called angiotensin I into a more potent substance that increases salt and water retention in your body.
You must take Lotrel regularly for it to be effective. Since blood pressure declines gradually, it may take 1 to 2 weeks for the full effect of Lotrel to be seen. Even if you are feeling well, you must continue to take the medication. Lotrel does not cure high blood pressure; it merely keeps it under control.
Take Lotrel exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Try to take your medication at the same time each day, such as before or after breakfast, so that it is easier to remember.
Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Lotrel.
If you develop swelling of your face, around the lips, tongue, or throat; swelling of arms and legs; or difficulty swallowing, you should contact your doctor immediately. You may need emergency treatment. Be especially wary if you're an African American: Your chances of this type of reaction are higher. Severe allergic reactions are also more likely if you are being given bee or wasp venom to guard against future reactions to stings.
If you are sensitive to or have ever had an allergic reaction to amlodipine, benazepril, or any angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, do not take Amlodipine and Benazepril Hydrochloride.
Your kidney function should be assessed when you start taking Lotrel, then monitored for the first few weeks.
If you have poor kidney function, there is a slight chance that benazepril may reduce your supply of infection-fighting white blood cells. The risk of this problem rises if you also have a disease such as lupus. If you're on kidney dialysis, your chances of an allergic reaction to the drug are increased.
Contact your doctor if you develop abdominal pain with or without nausea and vomiting. ACE inhibitors such as Lotrel have been known to cause intestinal swelling.
Lotrel can cause low blood pressure, especially if you are taking high doses of diuretics. You may feel light-headed or faint, especially during the first few days of therapy. If these symptoms occur, contact your doctor. Your dosage may need to be adjusted or discontinued.
If you have congestive heart failure, use Amlodipine and Benazepril Hydrochloride with caution. If you have kidney disease or severe liver disease, diabetes, lupus erythematosus, or scleroderma (a rare disease affecting the blood vessels or connective tissue), use Lotrel with caution.
Excessive sweating, severe diarrhea, or vomiting could make you lose too much water, causing a severe drop in blood pressure. If you notice a yellow coloring to your skin or the whites of your eyes, stop taking the drug and notify your doctor immediately. You could be developing liver problems.
If you develop a persistent, dry cough, tell your doctor. It may be due to the medication and, if so, will disappear if you stop taking Lotrel. In a medical emergency and before you have surgery, notify your doctor or dentist that you are taking Lotrel.Possible food and drug interactions when taking Amlodipine and Benazepril Hydrochloride
If Lotrel is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Lotrel with the following:LithiumPotassium supplementsPotassium-sparing diuretics such as amiloride, spironolactone, and triamtereneDiuretics such as chlorothiazide, furosemide, hydrochlorothiazide
Lotrel can cause injury or death to developing and newborn babies, especially if taken during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. If you are pregnant and are taking Lotrel, contact your doctor immediately to discuss the potential hazard to your unborn child. Minimal amounts of benazepril appear in breast milk. If Amlodipine and Benazepril Hydrochloride is essential to your health, your doctor may advise you to discontinue breastfeeding while you are taking Lotrel.
Your doctor will closely monitor the effects of Amlodipine and Benazepril Hydrochloride and adjust the dosage according to your blood pressure response. Lotrel is available in capsules that contain 2.5 milligrams of amlodipine and 10 milligrams of benazepril, capsules containing 5 milligrams of amlodipine and 10 or 20 milligrams of benazepril and capsules containing 10 milligrams of amlodipine and 20 milligrams of benazepril. Small, older, frail, and kidney- or liver-impaired individuals usually start with the lowest dose.
Safety and effectiveness in children have not been established.
Any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. Although there is no specific information available, a sudden drop in blood pressure and rapid heartbeat would be the primary symptoms of a Lotrel overdose. If you suspect an overdose, seek medical attention immediately.