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High Blood Pressure

Amlodipine

Amlodipine is a prescription medication which belongs to a group of medicines called calcium antagonists and is used in the treatment of high blood pressure, chest pain or angina. High blood pressure, otherwise known as hypertension, is when blood is being pumped around the body with too much force against the blood vessels.

This can lead to serious health complications such as heart disease, heart attacks, and strokes, and this medicine helps prevent these complications. Hypertension is usually managed with medication long term and lifestyle changes such as exercising and eating more healthy foods. Amlodipine makes it easier to pump blood around the body with less strain on the heart.

Last PIL Review Date: 22/01/2020

See Amlodipine Patient Information Leaflet

This medicine is not available to request via our online service. If you are still having trouble with your symptoms please visit the NHS website for services in your area.


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Dr. Diana Gall GMC No. 7685129

Dr Diana Gall graduated from medical school in 2005 and has since undertaken further intensive training in many different areas of medicine. Dr Diana has reached consultant level and has practiced medicine all over Europe.

Shamir Patel GPHC No. 2049338

Shamir is a well-respected pharmacist with extensive experience running online pharmacies in the UK.

How does it work?

Amlodipine is a calcium antagonist and works by relaxing and widening the blood vessels which creates more space for the blood to pump around the body, this lessens the pressure of the blood being pumped and therefore lowers high blood pressure. As blood flow is improved so is the supply of oxygen to the heart which reduces chest pain and angina. Lowering your blood pressure in turn reduces the effort it takes to get oxygen to the heart, and therefore this medicine prevents the complications of high blood pressure.

Who is amlodipine suitable for?

Amlodipine is suitable for adults and children over the age of 6 who have been diagnosed with hypertension which needs to be managed with medication. This medicine is also suitable for adults who have other conditions related to the heart such as chest pain that is known as vasospastic angina pectoris, or angina pectoris which is caused by blockages in the arteries.

Who is amlodipine not suitable for?

Not everyone with high blood pressure or chest pain will be suitable to take this particular medicine. There are many reasons why a medicine may not be suitable, usually this is because of a person having other health problems or taking other medication which may interact with amlodipine.

If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding this may also make you unsuitable for this medicine. You should always consult your doctor if you’re taking other medication, have a health condition or have a history of certain conditions, or are pregnant, to ensure that this medicine is safe for you to take.

Amlodipine and pregnancy

Hypertension still needs to be managed during pregnancy and breastfeeding but it’s important to always consult your doctor for advice on the safest way to treat this condition without harming your baby. The safety of taking amlodipine while pregnant has not been established so it’s not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women, at least not without consulting a doctor first.

Amlodipine and health conditions

Always ask a doctor if amlodipine is suitable for you to take if you have other health conditions. Although this medicine is used to treat hypertension, it may not be suitable in cases of hypertensive crisis, which is a severe increase in blood pressure, or severe low blood pressure (hypotension). It may treat conditions related to the heart but if you have heart failure, aortic stenosis, or have had a recent heart attack you may not be suitable for amlodipine.

You should also discuss your suitability for this medicine if you have any of the following health conditions:

  • Liver problems
  • Allergic to amlodipine, dihydropyridine derivatives, or any other ingredient in this medicine
  • If you’re in a state of shock
  • If you’re elderly

If you have an allergy to any of the ingredients in this medicine you will certainly not be suitable and will need to find alternative treatment as allergic reactions can be severe and life threatening.

Amlodipine and other medication

When starting a new medication, you should always check that it is safe to take with other medicines that you may currently be taking to avoid side effects and interaction between the drugs. If you’re taking other high blood pressure tablets you may not be able to take amlodipine as this may lower your blood pressure further. There are other medicines which you should be aware of if you’re taking amlodipine and these include:

  • Ketoconazole or itraconazole used to treat fungal infections
  • Ritonavir, indinavir, and nelfinavir used to treat HIV
  • Antibiotic drugs known as rifampicin, erythromycin, and clarithromycin
  • Hypericum perforatum (St. John’s wort -used for depression)
  • Diltiazem and verapamil used to treat heart disease
  • Cholesterol lowering medicine known as simvastatin
  • Dantrolene
  • Trimethoprim and co-trimoxazole
  • Temsirolimus
  • Everolimus
  • Sirolimus or tacrolimus
  • Cyclosporin

How to take amlodipine

Amlodipine tablets should be taken at the same time each day with water and not with grapefruit juice or grapefruit. The usual starting dose for adults it 5mg once a day which may increase to the maximum of 10mg. For children and adolescents aged 6-17 the starting dose is 2.5mg rising to 5mg. The dose may be different for the elderly or those with impaired liver function.

What are the side effects of amlodipine?

As with any medication there are side effects, some are common and some are rare with only 1 in 1,000 or 1 in 10,000 people experiencing the rare side effects. If you experience any of the following side effects while taking this medicine you should stop taking it and visit your GP as soon as possible to discuss alternative treatment to keep your blood pressure under control.

Common side effects

Symptoms which may affect up to 1 in 10 people include:

  • Oedema (fluid retention)
  • Headache, dizziness, sleepiness
  • Palpitations, flushing
  • Abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhoea, constipation, indigestion
  • Ankle swelling, tiredness, muscle cramps, weakness
  • Visual disturbances, double-vision

Uncommon/rare side effects

There are some side effects which may pose risks to your health but these are very rare. You should pay close attention to signs of an allergic reaction such as sudden wheezing, chest pain, shortness of breath or difficulty in breathing, as well as swelling of the eyelids, face or lips, tongue and throat. You may also experience a severe skin reactions including intense skin rash, hives, reddening of the skin over your whole body, severe itching, blistering, peeling and swelling of the skin, inflammation of mucous membranes (Stevens Johnson Syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis) or other allergic reactions. Allergic reactions can be severe and potentially life threatening so it’s important to get urgent medical help if you’re experiencing these side effects.

Other rare side effects include but are not limited to:

  • Changes in mood, anxiety, depression
  • Feeling of numbness or tingling in the limbs, loss of pain sensation
  • Low blood pressure
  • Sneezing/runny nose (rhinitis)
  • Dry mouth, vomiting
  • Inability to get an erection, breast enlargement in men
  • Pain, feeling unwell, joint or muscle pain, back pain
  • Frequent urination or urge to urinate
  • Confusion
  • Abnormal liver function

How long will I need to take amlodipine and is it effective at treating high blood pressure?

If you’re taking amlodipine to treat high blood pressure then this is usually long term or for the rest of your life. Amlodipine effectively keeps blood pressure under control and starts to work straight away, however, you may not experience the full effects until a couple of weeks later. If taken consistently and correctly this medicine can reduce your blood pressure to a normal level and prevent the serious complications of this condition.

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The following delivery methods are currently available within the UK: All orders are sent in discreet, plain packaging.

UK Standard Delivery, £1.99

Order before 12pm to have your order delivered using Royal Mail Tracked 48 Service

standard UK delivery within 3-5 working days

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Order before 12pm to have your order delivered using the Express delivery service* (deliveries are made Monday - Saturday)

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Order before 12pm to have your order delivered before 1pm next day using Royal Mail Special Delivery service, this also includes Saturday deliveries.

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Order before 12pm to have your order delivered before 9am next day using Royal Mail Special Delivery service, this also includes Saturday deliveries.

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Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered the following working day

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 12 noon the following working day

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Next Day Delivery, by 10:30am, £14.99  (Monday - Friday only. This service does not include Saturday)

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 10:30am the following working day

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered the following Saturday

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Saturday Delivery, by 12:00am, £21.99

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 12:00am Saturday

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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DPD Saturday Delivery, by 10:30am, £29.99

Orders signed by the doctor before 12 noon the day before will be delivered by 10:30am Saturday

If your order is signed by the doctor after 12 noon, your order will be delivered within 2 working days

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