Commonly referred to as Zestril, Lisinopril is a medication mainly used by individuals with hypertension. The drug belongs to a group of medications known as ACE inhibitors. The specialty of this medication is the fact that it is effective in increasing the chances of survival in a person who had experienced a heart attack – especially amongst individuals with a coronary artery disease.
How it works
Since the medication is an ACE inhibitor, it blocks the undesirable Angiotensin Converting Enzyme, which is dangerous to your heart. Through this blockage, it relaxes the blood cells in the body and enables blood to flow more fluidly to all organs.
The drug is used to treat a number of illnesses including high blood pressure, congestive heart failure and reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. It also known to decrease the occurrence of kidney problems amongst people with diabetes.
Your dosage can differ from that of another person and will be measured according to your personal condition and response to the treatment. However, in general, Lisinopril is taken only once daily. If you are taking the medication in liquid form, make sure to measure it accurately since it can easily result in overdose. The length of the treatment will differ according to your condition. For example, people with high blood pressure need to take this medication for up to six weeks, while people with a heart failure need a longer period to recover. Do not stop taking the medication without informing your physician – even if you feel normal.
Listed below are some of the side effects that you might/might not experience when consuming Lisinopril on the long term.
Kidney problems – painful urination, swelling of feet, shortness of breath
Liver problems – severe pain in the upper stomach, jaundice, loss of appetite
High potassium effects – slower heart rate, nausea, loss of movement
Even though not everyone will experience these severe symptoms, it is best to keep an eye out for them. You might experience less severe effects such as drowsiness, dizziness, cough, chest pain and headache. Regardless of the severity of the symptom, make sure to contact a healthcare provider immediately to reverse its effects.
By following the guidelines mentioned below, you will be able to reduce the risk of the above side effects to a great extent.
Stop alcohol consumption- It can reduce the effectiveness of the medication and increase the risk of side effects
Do not consume salt substitutes or potassium supplements without consulting your physician
Do not engage in any activity that requires attention – especially driving
If you accidently miss your dose, do not double it the next time. Skip it and follow your usual timetable
This medication can result in serious dehydration. So, make sure to consume a lot of water and other fluids to keep yourself hydrated. Consuming this medication can make you more susceptible to a heat stroke since it reduces the level of sweating.
Keep your physician informed about your medical history and current medications. This will enable him/her determine whether the medication will be effective to you. Also, these details are important to ensure that Lisinopril does not react negatively to your existing medications.