Generic Name: amlodipine and valsartan (am LOE de peen val SAR tan)Brand Names: Exforge
Amlodipine is in a group of drugs called calcium channel blockers. It works by relaxing the muscles of your heart and blood vessels.
Amlodipine and valsartan is in a group of drugs called angiotensin II receptor antagonists. Amlodipine and valsartan keeps blood vessels from narrowing, which lowers blood pressure and improves blood flow.
The combination of amlodipine and valsartan is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). This medication is usually given after others have been tried without successful treatment of hypertension.
Amlodipine and valsartan may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.What is the most important information I should know about amlodipine and valsartan?Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are pregnant. Valsartan may cause injury and even death to the unborn baby if you take it during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. Use an effective form of birth control. Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment.
Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.Do not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes while you are taking amlodipine and valsartan, unless your doctor has told you to. Call your doctor at once if you have swelling in your hands or feet, rapid weight gain, fast or pounding heartbeats, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes), chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling, or if you feel like you might pass out. In rare cases, amlodipine and valsartan can cause a condition that results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, leading to kidney failure. Call your doctor right away if you have muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness especially if you also have fever, nausea or vomiting, and dark colored urine.What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking amlodipine and valsartan?You should not use this medication if you are allergic to amlodipine (Norvasc) or valsartan (Diovan).
Before using amlodipine and valsartan, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:
congestive heart failure;
angina (chest pain), severe coronary artery disease;
if you are vomiting or having diarrhea; or
if you have recently had a heart attack.
If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use amlodipine and valsartan, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.If you are also taking a beta-blocker drug (such as Blocadren, Corgard, Inderal, Normodyne, Tenormin, Toprol, Trandate, Zibeta, and others) do not suddenly stop using the beta-blocker without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely. Stopping a beta-blocker too quickly can cause serious heart problems that will not be prevented by amlodipine and valsartan. FDA pregnancy category D. This medication can cause harm to an unborn baby. Valsartan may cause injury and even death to the unborn baby if you take it during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. Do not use amlodipine and valsartan without your doctor's consent if you are pregnant. Use an effective form of birth control. Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether amlodipine and valsartan passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results from this medication.Take this medication with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.
To be sure this medication is helping your condition and not causing harmful effects, your blood pressure will need to be checked on a regular basis. Your kidney function may also need to be tested. Do not miss any scheduled visits to your doctor.If you need to undergo kidney dialysis or have any type of surgery, tell the doctor ahead of time that you are using amlodipine and valsartan.
Keep using this medication even if you feel fine. High blood pressure often has no symptoms.Store amlodipine and valsartan at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
See also: Amlodipine and valsartan dosage in more detail
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Overdose symptoms may include fast or slow heartbeat, warmth or tingling, feeling light-headed, or fainting.
Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.Do not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes while you are taking amlodipine and valsartan, unless your doctor has told you to.
feeling like you might pass out;
swelling in your hands or feet, rapid weight gain;
fast or pounding heartbeats;
jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling.
Less serious side effects may include:
dizziness, spinning sensation;
runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, cough;
warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under your skin;
diarrhea, constipation, stomach pain;
dry mouth, loss of appetite;
joint pain; or
anxiety, sleep problems (insomnia).
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Usual Adult Dose for Hypertension:
Initial dose: Individualize based on the effectiveness and tolerance for each individual component. In clinical trials, the dose for each component is amlodipine 5 mg to 10 mg orally once daily and valsartan 160 mg to 320 mg orally once daily.In general, the antihypertensive effectiveness increases with increasing doses.
Before taking amlodipine and valsartan, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:
potassium supplements or salt substitutes;
diuretics (water pills); or
other medications that lower blood pressure.
This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with amlodipine and valsartan. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.