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- What is benazepril, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What brand names are available for benazepril?
- Is benazepril available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for benazepril?
- What are the uses for benazepril?
- What are the side effects of benazepril?
- What is the dosage for benazepril?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with benazepril?
- Is benazepril safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about benazepril?
What is benazepril, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- Benazepril is an ACE (angiotensin converting enzyme) inhibitor used for treating high blood pressure. Other ACE inhibitors include enalapril (Vasotec), quinapril (Accupril), captopril (Capoten), fosinopril (Monopril), ramipril (Altace), moexipril (Univasc) and trandolapril (Mavik). ACE is an enzyme in the body that causes the formation of angiotensin II. Angiotensin II causes contraction of the muscles surrounding arteries and constriction of arteries in the body, thereby elevating blood pressure. ACE inhibitors such as benazepril lower blood pressure by inhibiting the formation of angiotensin II, thus relaxing the arteries. Relaxing the arteries not only lowers blood pressure, but also improves the pumping efficiency of a failing heart and thereby benefits patients with heart failure.
- The FDA approved benazepril in June 1991.
What are the uses for benazepril?
What are the side effects of benazepril?
Benazepril is generally well tolerated and side effects are usually mild and transient. Side effects include:
- Abdominal pain
- Loss of taste
- Loss of appetite
- Nausea and vomiting
- Easy bruising or bleeding
- Chest pain
- Difficulty breathing
- Severe dizziness
- Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet
- A sore or swollen throat
A dry, persistent cough has been reported with the use of benazepril and other ACE inhibitors. Coughing resolves after discontinuing the medication.
In rare instances, liver dysfunction and skin yellowing (jaundice) have been reported with ACE inhibitors. Benazepril should not be taken by people with a known allergy to ACE inhibitors. Swelling of the facial tissues and even the upper airways has been reported with ACE inhibitors on very rare occasions, and can lead to serious breathing difficulties. In rare instances, low white blood cell counts have been reported with the use of one ACE inhibitor. Low white blood cells increase the patient's risk of infections.
Quick GuideHow to Lower Blood Pressure: Exercise Tips
What is the dosage for benazepril?
- The usual starting dose of benazepril is 10 mg daily. If patients are taking a diuretic (water pill) the starting dose is 5 mg daily.
- Doses may be increased to 20-40 mg once daily or divided and administered twice daily.
Which drugs or supplements interact with benazepril?
- Combining benazepril with potassium supplements, potassium containing salt substitutes, and potassium conserving diuretics such as amiloride (Moduretic), spironolactone (Aldactone), and triamterene (Dyazide, Maxzide), can lead to dangerously high blood levels of potassium.
- Combining benazepril or other ACE inhibitors with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in patients who are elderly, fluid-depleted (including those on diuretic therapy), or with poor kidney function may result in reduced kidney function, including kidney failure. These effects usually are reversible.
- There have been reports that aspirin and other NSAIDs such as ibuprofen (Advil, Children's Advil/Motrin, Medipren, Motrin, Nuprin, PediaCare Fever, and many others), indomethacin (Indocin, Indocin-SR), and naproxen (Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn, Aleve) may reduce the effects of ACE inhibitors. When taken with lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid), benazepril can increase lithium to toxic levels in the blood.
- Nitritoid reactions (symptoms include facial flushing, nausea, vomiting and hypotension) may occur when injectable gold (sodium aurothiomalate), used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, is combined with ACE inhibitors, including benazepril.
Is benazepril safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
What else should I know about benazepril?
What preparations of benazepril are available?
Tablets: 5, 10, 20, and 40 mg.
How should I keep benazepril stored?
Tablets should be stored at room temperature at or below 30 C (86 F) and protected from moisture.
Benazepril (Lotensin) is a medication prescribed alone or in combination with hydrochlorothiazide for treating high blood pressure. Off label uses for Lotensin include treatment for heart failure or diabetic neuropathy. Side effects, drug interactions, dosing, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety should be reviewed prior to taking this medication.
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Medications & Supplements
- High Blood Pressure Drugs (Hypertension)
- ACE Inhibitors (Side Effects, List of Names, Uses, and Dosage)
- lisinopril (Zestril, Prinivil, Qbrelis) ACE Inhibitor
- Drugs: What You Should Know About Your Drugs
- Vasodilators (Drug Class Side Effects, List of Names)
- ramipril, Altace
- Drug Interactions
- Congestive Heart Failure Medications
- captopril, Capoten
- enalapril, Vasotec, Epaned
- quinapril, Accupril
- trandolapril, Mavik
- lisinopril and hydrochlorothiazide, Zestoretic, Prinzide
- fosinopril sodium, Monopril
- benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide, Lotensin HCT
- enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide, Vaseretic
- captopril and hydrochlorothiazide, Capozide
Prevention & Wellness
Heart Health Resources
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.
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Diabetes and Kidney DiseaseIn the United States diabetes is the most common cause of kidney failure. High blood pressure and high levels of blood glucose increase the risk that a person with diabetes will eventually progress to kidney failure. Kidney disease in people with diabetes develops over the course of many years. albumin and eGFR are two key markers for kidney disease in people with diabetes. Controlling high blood pressure, blood pressure medications, a moderate protein diet, and compliant management of blood glucose can slow the progression of kidney disease. For those patients who's kidneys eventually fail, dialysis or kidney transplantation is the only option.
Diabetes MellitusDiabetes is a chronic condition characterized by high levels of sugar (glucose) in the blood. The two types of diabetes are referred to as type 1 (insulin dependent) and type 2 (non-insulin dependent). Symptoms of diabetes include increased urine output, thirst, hunger, and fatigue. Treatment of diabetes depends on the type.
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High Blood Pressure Hypertension
High blood pressure (hypertension) is a disease in which pressure within the arteries of the body is elevated. About 75 million people in the US have hypertension (1 in 3 adults), and only half of them are able to manage it. Many people do not know that they have high blood pressure because it often has no has no warning signs or symptoms.
Systolic and diastolic are the two readings in which blood pressure is measured. The American College of Cardiology released new guidelines for high blood pressure in 2017. The guidelines now state that blood normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. If either one of those numbers is higher, you have high blood pressure.
The American Academy of Cardiology defines high blood pressure slightly differently. The AAC considers 130/80 mm Hg. or greater (either number) stage 1 hypertension. Stage 2 hypertension is considered 140/90 mm Hg. or greater.
If you have high blood pressure you are at risk of developing life threatening diseases like stroke and heart attack.
REFERENCE: CDC. High Blood Pressure. Updated: Nov 13, 2017.
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