Irbesartan is used for treating high blood pressure. It may be used alone or with other blood pressure medicines.
What is this medicine?
IRBESARTAN helps lower blood pressure to normal levels. It controls high blood pressure, but it is not a cure. High blood pressure can damage your kidneys, and may lead to a stroke or heart failure. Irbesartan helps prevent these things from happening.
What should my health care professional know before I take this medicine?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- previous swelling of the tongue, face, or lips with difficulty breathing, difficulty swallowing, hoarseness, or tightening of the throat
- heart failure
- kidney disease
- liver disease
- electrolyte imbalance (e.g. low or high levels of potassium in the blood)
- if you are on a special diet, such as a low-salt diet (e.g. using potassium substitutes)
- an unusual or allergic reaction to irbesartan, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I take this medicine?
Take irbesartan tablets by mouth. Swallow the tablets with a drink of water. Irbesartan can be taken with or without food. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
Contact your pediatrician or health care professional regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medicine?
- antiinflammatory pain medicines such as ibuprofen
- blood pressure medications
- monoamine oxidase inhibitors
- potassium salts or potassium supplements
- water pills (especially potassium-sparing diuretics such as triamterene or amiloride)
Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including nonprescription medicines, nutritional supplements, or herbal products. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke, or if you use illegal drugs. These may affect the way your medicine works. Check with your health care professional before stopping or starting any of your medicines.
What should I watch for while taking this medicine?
Check your blood pressure regularly while you are taking irbesartan. Ask your prescriber or health care professional what your blood pressure should be and when you should contact him or her. When you check your blood pressure, write down the measurements to show your prescriber or health care professional. If you are taking this medicine for a long time you must visit your prescriber or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Make sure you schedule appointments on a regular basis.
You may experience dizziness. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that requires mental alertness until you know how irbesartan affects you. To avoid dizziness, do not stand or sit up quickly.
Avoid salt substitutes unless you are told otherwise by your prescriber or health care professional.
If you are going to have surgery tell your prescriber or health care professional that you are taking irbesartan.
Women should inform their doctor if they wish to become pregnant or think they might be pregnant. There is a potential for serious side effects to an unborn child, particularly in the second or third trimester. Talk to your health care professional or pharmacist for more information.
What side effects may I notice from this medicine?
Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible:
- difficulty breathing or swallowing, hoarseness, or tightening of the throat
- swelling of your face, lips, tongue, hands, or feet
- unusual rash or hives
- decreased sexual function
- confusion, dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting spells
- decreased amount of urine passed
- fast or uneven heart beat or palpitations
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
- fatigue or tiredness
- nasal congestion or stuffiness
- sore or cramping muscles
- upset stomach
This list may not describe all possible side effects.
Where can I keep my medicine?
Keep out of the reach of children in a container that small children cannot open.
Store at room temperature between 15-30 degrees C (59-86 degrees F). Protect from light. Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.