- High Blood Pressure Slideshow Pictures
- Take the Salt Quiz!
- Lowering Blood Pressure Exercise Tips Pictures
- What is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
- Why is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) prescribed to patients?
- Do I need a prescription for amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
- Is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) available as a generic drug?
- What are the side effects of amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
- What is the dosage for amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
- Is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
What is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
Amlodipine belongs to a class of medications called calcium channel blockers (CCBs).
Why is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) prescribed to patients?
Chest pain or heart pain (angina) occurs because of insufficient oxygen delivered to the heart muscles. Insufficient oxygen may be a result of coronary artery blockage or spasm, or because of exertion which increases the need of the heart for oxygen in patients with coronary artery narrowing (coronary artery disease or atherosclerosis). Amlodipine is used for the treatment and prevention of angina resulting from coronary spasm as well as from exertion. Amlodipine also is used in the treatment of high blood pressure.
What are the side effects of amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
Side effects of amlodipine are generally mild and reversible. The two most common side effects are:
Other side effects include:
More serious side effects include:
Increase in the frequency and severity of angina or heart attack due to amlodipine happens on rare occasions in patients with severe coronary artery disease when first starting amlodipine, or at the time of an increase in dosage. Excessive lowering of blood pressure during initiation of amlodipine treatment can occur, especially in patients already taking other medications that lower blood pressure. In rare instances, congestive heart failure has been associated with amlodipine, particularly in patients already taking a beta blocker.
What is the dosage for amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
The recommended starting dose of amlodipine for children and adults is 2.5 to 5 mg once daily. The maximum dose for adults is 10 mg once daily and the maximum dose for children is 5 mg once daily. Amlodipine can be taken with or without food. Amlodipine is inactivated mainly by the liver, and dosages may need to be lowered in patients with liver dysfunction.
Which drugs or supplements interact with amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
- Combining amlodipine with sildenafil (Viagra) and similar drugs used for treating erectile dysfunction may lead to excessive reductions in blood pressure with complications, particularly fainting upon standing (orthostatic hypotension).
- Amlodipine significantly increases blood levels of simvastatin (Zocor). The dose of simvastatin should be limited to 20 mg daily by patients taking amlodipine.
- Ketoconazole (Nizoral, Extina, Xolegel, Kuric), itraconazole (Sporanox), ritonavir (Norvir) and other drugs that are strong inhibitors of amlodipine inactivation in the liver increase blood levels of amlodipine, resulting in excessive blood pressure reduction.
Is amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
- Generally, amlodipine is avoided in pregnancy, and by nursing mothers and children although there are no adequate studies of amlodipine use during pregnancy.
- It is not known whether amlodipine is excreted in breast milk. Generally, amlodipine is avoided in pregnancy, and by nursing mothers and children.
What else should I know about amlodipine besylate (Norvasc)?
What preparations of amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) are available?
- Tablets: 2.5, 5, and 10 mg
How should I keep amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) stored?
- Amlodipine should be stored at room temperature in a tight, light resistant container.
How does amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) work?
- Calcium channel blocker medications block the transport of calcium into the smooth muscle cells lining the arteries of the heart (coronary arteries) and other arteries of the body. Since the action of calcium is important for muscle contraction, blocking calcium transport relaxes arterial muscles and expands (dilates) coronary arteries and other arteries of the body. By dilating coronary arteries, amlodipine increases the flow of blood to the heart and is useful in preventing heart pain (angina) resulting from reduced flow of blood to the heart caused by coronary artery spasm (contraction). Relaxing the muscles lining the arteries in the rest of the body lowers blood pressure, which reduces the work that the heart must do to pump blood to the body. Reducing the work of the heart also lessens the heart muscle's need for oxygen, and thereby further helps to prevent angina in patients with coronary artery disease.
When was amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) approved by the FDA?
- The FDA approved amlodipine in July 1992.
Amlodipine besylate (Norvasc) is a drug that belongs to the drug class of calcium channel blockers (CCBs), and is prescribed for the treatment and prevention of angina (heart or chest pain) that results from coronary spasm and from exertion. Norvasc also is prescribed for the treatment of high blood pressure. Side effects include:
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension): Symptoms, Causes, Treatments
What causes high blood pressure (hypertension)? Know the warning signs and symptoms of high blood pressure. Read about high blood...
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension) Quiz: Symptoms, Signs & Causes
Take this quiz and test your IQ of high blood pressure (hypertension), the cardiovascular disease that causes most strokes and...
Heart Disease Quiz: Test Your Medical IQ
Take our Heart Disease Quiz to get answers and facts about high cholesterol, atherosclerosis prevention, and the causes,...
Picture of Hypertension
High blood pressure, defined as a repeatedly elevated blood pressure exceeding 140 over 90 mmHg -- a systolic pressure above 140...
Heart Disease: Symptoms, Signs, and Causes
What is heart disease (coronary artery disease)? Learn about the causes of heart disease. Symptoms of heart disease include chest...
Picture of Heart Detail
The heart is composed of specialized cardiac muscle, and it is four-chambered, with a right atrium and ventricle, and an...
Picture of Heart
The muscle that pumps blood received from veins into arteries throughout the body. See a picture of the Heart and learn more...
Heart-Healthy Diet: 25 Foods to Protect Your Cardiovascular System
See 25 foods loaded with heart-healthy nutrients that help protect your cardiovascular system. Plus, find easy meal/recipes and...
Healthy Seeds: 11 Edible Super Seeds for Better Nutrition
Are pumpkin seeds good for your health? What's the nutritional value of chia seeds? Find out how to easily incorporate more...
Related Disease Conditions
12 Congestive Heart Failure Symptoms, Stages, Causes, and Life Expectancy
Congestive heart failure (CHF) refers to a condition in which the heart loses the ability to function properly. Heart disease,...
Fainting (Syncope) Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, and Prevention
Fainting, also referred to as blacking out, syncope, or temporary loss of consciousness has many causes. Often a person will have...
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension) Signs, Causes, Diet, and Treatment
High blood pressure (hypertension) is a disease in which pressure within the arteries of the body is elevated. About 75 million...
Angina (Symptoms, Causes, Types, Diagnosis, and Treatment)
Angina is chest pain due to inadequate blood supply to the heart. Angina symptoms may include chest tightness, burning,...
Chest pain is a common complaint by a patient in the ER. Causes of chest pain include broken or bruised ribs, pleurisy,...
High Blood Pressure Treatment (Natural Home Remedies, Diet, Medications)
High blood pressure (hypertension) means high pressure (tension) in the arteries. Treatment for high blood pressure include...
Febrile seizures, or convulsions caused by fever, can be frightening in small children or infants. However, in general, febrile...
Treatment & Diagnosis
- High Blood Pressure FAQs
- Heart Disease FAQs
- Drugs: Buying Prescription Drugs Online Safely
- Drugs: The Most Common Medication Errors
- Medication Disposal
- Dangers of Mixing Medications
- How To Reduce Your Medication Costs
- Pharmacy Visit, How To Get The Most Out of Your Visit
- Indications for Drugs: Approved vs. Non-approved
- Generic Drugs, Are They as Good as Brand-Names?
Medications & Supplements
- High Blood Pressure Drugs (Hypertension)
- Drug Interactions
- Drugs: Questions to Ask Your Doctor or Pharmacist about Your Drugs
- Calcium Channel Blockers (CCBs)
- nifedipine (Procardia, Adalat, Afeditab)
- felodipine (Plendil)
- diltiazem (Cardizem, Cardizem CD, Cardizem LA, Tiazac, Cartia XT, Diltzac, Dilt-CD, and several oth)
- Lotrel (amlodipine and benazepril)
- verapamil (Calan, Verelan, Verelan PM [Discontinued: Isoptin, Isoptin SR, Covera-HS])
- nicardipine, Cardene, Cardene SR
- nisoldipine, Sular
- bepridil (Vascor, Bepadin - Discontinued)
Prevention & Wellness
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
FDA Prescribing Information