The Lisinopril drug class is ACE inhibitors. The angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) is responsible for controlling blood pressure (by converting angiotensin I into angiotensin II). When this enzyme is blocked, that lowers blood pressure. At the same time, a decrease in angiotensin II levels makes arterioles relax. Obviously, that also leads to a reduction in blood pressure. In addition, this medication influences the operation of kidneys. Namely, it stimulates the excretion of sodium and water and increases the retention of potassium ions. That also contributes to the normalization of blood pressure.
How quickly does Lisinopril lower blood pressure? According to researchers, in most cases, a noticeable effect is reached in about an hour after intake. The concentration of this medicine in the blood reaches its peak in about 7 hours. Besides, the effect of this medication is durable enough ― from 24 to 30 hours. However, as a rule, this treatment starts working in full force only several weeks after the beginning of the course.
Lisinopril and Erectile Dysfunction
One of the accompanying problems of blood hypertension is erectile dysfunction. So, if a man has both ED and hypertension, he must normalize his blood pressure in the first case. Then, there is a good chance that his sexual problems will also go away.
But there is one nuance ― certain medications for normalizing blood pressure can cause ED themselves. This is the case with beta-blockers and diuretics.
So, is Lisinopril a beta blocker? No. And it rarely causes erectile problems. To be more precise, the risk is about 1%. On the contrary, this medication improves blood flow, and that increases the hardness and durability of erections. So, its use indirectly helps to normalize erectile function.
Yet, even if you face such a side effect, you should not interrupt the course or change the dose without getting approval from your doctor.
Also, it is crucial to highlight that, if you face the symptoms of erectile dysfunction during the course of Lisinopril, you should not use any ED medications without consulting your doctor. Sure, you can turn to the specialist and ask to recommend another treatment for hypertension, which will not affect your erectile function.
What Is Lisinopril Used For?
Doctors prescribe this drug in the following cases:
- to control blood hypertension;
- to prevent heart strokes and attacks;
- to treat heart failure;
- to increase survival chances in the case of heart attacks;
- to prevent kidney disorders in patients suffering from diabetes.
One should explain that Lisinopril is the name of the active substance. However, medicines including it can be marketed by different brands. For example, you have probably heard of such brand names as Prinivil, Zestril, Zestoretic, and others.
For a patient, there is no big difference, which manufacturer to choose. More to the point, if you choose a generic version rather than the original tablets by Merck & Co., you will reduce your expenses by several times. And a generic product will provide an identical therapeutic effect. Be sure to discuss this option with your doctor.
How to Take
This is a prescription medication, that is why one is not allowed to use it without consulting a medical specialist. A suitable Lisinopril dosage is also determined by a doctor only.
Manufacturers offer a wide selection of doses. As a rule, doctors recommend patients start with Lisinopril 5 mg per day. Then, the dose can be adjusted, depending on the reaction of the organism. Lisinopril 40 mg per day is usually the maximum recommended dose.
This medicine can also be prescribed to kids. Then, a suitable daily dose is calculated taking into account the weight of a patient.
Most patients use this medication once per day as it works for about 24 hours. One can take it both before and after meals. Its absorption is not influenced by food. Also, it is advisable to drink a glass of water to speed up its dissolution.
- Patients should keep in mind that side effects can be caused by any medication. And, if a doctor has prescribed certain medicine, that means that its therapeutic effect overweighs all the potential risks.
- However, if one faces any adverse reactions after taking this drug, consulting a medical professional is a must.
- The most widespread problems are headaches, dizziness, faintness, fatigue. Also, patients may face Lisinopril cough.
- Besides, there are reactions that require urgent medical help: fainting, severe fatigue, irregularities or drops in a heartbeat (the latest two mentioned ones can be the symptoms of increased potassium levels).
- In addition, there is a low risk of kidney issues. So, a patient should see a doctor if he notices any urination changes.
- One should be aware of the symptoms of liver disorders as well. These can manifest themselves as durable nausea or vomiting, a drop in appetite, stomach pains, yellowish skin or eyes, urine darkening.
- This medicine rarely causes heavy allergies. Yet, if you see that your tongue or throat is swelling or you experience any difficulties in breathing, you must turn for urgent medical help right away.
- This list of potential side effects is not complete, so you should always consult a medical specialist if you encounter any negative reactions after taking the drug.
- Again, this medicine must be used on prescription only (both original and generic versions).
- When having a consultation with your doctor, inform him whether you have ever faced any allergic reactions to any medications, products, herbals, dietary supplements, colorants, aromatizers, or other ingredients added to medications or foods.
- You should never combine Lisinopril and potassium supplements without consulting your doctor. This medication can increase the level of this mineral in your body. Please note that potassium can be included in salt substitutes. Also, certain medications can raise its levels.
- As for other dangerous Lisinopril interactions, it should not be combined with aliskiren, sacubitril, or immunity-suppressive medications.
- Be sure to warn your doctor if you have ever passed through any blood filtering procedures, like dialysis.
- You must obligatorily warn your doctor in case you are pregnant or plan pregnancy. This medicine can cause severe harm to your baby.
- Also, as of now, there is no clear evidence of whether this medication can get into breast milk. So, such situations must also be clarified with a doctor.
- Some older patients may tolerate certain side effects of Lisinopril worse (namely, dizziness and rises in potassium blood concentration).
- You should not mix Lisinopril and alcohol. As we have already mentioned, this medication can cause dizziness, and alcoholic drinks can make the situation worse.
- For the same reason, you must talk to your doctor if you use cannabis.
- Besides, you should avoid all the activities that demand increased alertness: driving, riding a bike, cycling, operating varied machines.
What Is Lisinopril HCTZ?
That is another widely-used medication for lowering blood pressure. In addition to Lisinopril, it includes the second active ingredient ― hydrochlorothiazide. This medicine belongs to diuretics, i.e. it helps to remove excess water and salt out of the organism. In most cases, this combined product is prescribed when standard Lisinopril tablets turn out to be ineffective for a particular patient.
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