What is Benicar, and what is it used for?
Benicar (olmesartan medoxomil) is an angiotensin II receptor antagonist used to treat hypertension in adults and children six years of age and older, to lower blood pressure. Lowering blood pressure reduces the risk of fatal and nonfatal cardiovascular events, primarily strokes and myocardial infarctions.
What are the side effects of Benicar?
Common side effects of Benicar include:
- back pain,
- joint or muscle pain,
- stomach pain,
- itching or skin rash,
- flu-like symptoms,
- blood in the urine, and
- sinus infections.
Potentially serious side effects of Benicar include:
What is the dosage for Benicar?
- Dosage must be individualized. The usual recommended starting dose of Benicar is 20 mg once daily when used as monotherapy in patients who are not volume-contracted.
- For patients requiring further reduction in blood pressure after 2 weeks of therapy, the dose of Benicar may be increased to 40 mg. Doses above 40 mg do not appear to have greater effect. Twice-daily dosing offers no advantage over the same total dose given once daily.
- For patients with possible depletion of intravascular volume (e.g., patients treated with diuretics, particularly those with impaired renal function), initiate Benicar under close medical supervision and give consideration to use of a lower starting dose.
Pediatric Hypertension (6 Years Of Age And Older)
- Dosage must be individualized. For children who can swallow tablets, the usual recommended starting dose of Benicar is 10 mg once daily for patients who weigh 20 to <35 kg (44 to 77 lbs), or 20 mg once daily for patients who weigh ≥35 kg.
- For patients requiring further reduction in blood pressure after 2 weeks of therapy, the dose of Benicar may be increased to a maximum of 20 mg once daily for patients who weigh <35 kg or 40 mg once daily for patients who weigh ≥35 kg.
- Use of Benicar in children <1 year of age is not recommended.
- For children who cannot swallow tablets, the same dose can be given using an extemporaneous suspension as described below. Follow the suspension preparation instructions below to administer Benicar as a suspension.
What drugs interact with Benicar?
Agents Increasing Serum Potassium
- Concomitant use of olmesartan with other agents that block the renin-angiotensin system, potassium-sparing diuretics (e.g., spironolactone, triamterene, amiloride), potassium supplements, salt substitutes containing potassium or other drugs that may increase potassium levels (e.g., heparin) may lead to increases in serum potassium. If co-medication is considered necessary, monitoring of serum potassium is advisable.
Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Agents Including Selective Cyclooxygenase-2 Inhibitors (COX-2 Inhibitors)
- In patients who are elderly, volume-depleted (including those on diuretic therapy), or with compromised renal function, co-administration of NSAIDs, including selective COX-2 inhibitors, with angiotensin II receptor antagonists, including olmesartan medoxomil, may result in deterioration of renal function, including possible acute renal failure. These effects are usually reversible. Monitor renal function periodically in patients receiving olmesartan medoxomil and NSAID therapy.
- The antihypertensive effect of angiotensin II receptor antagonists, including olmesartan medoxomil, may be attenuated by NSAIDs including selective COX-2 inhibitors.
Dual Blockade Of The Renin-Angiotensin System (RAS)
- Dual blockade of the RAS with angiotensin receptor blockers, ACE inhibitors, or aliskiren is associated with increased risks of hypotension, hyperkalemia, and changes in renal function (including acute renal failure) compared to monotherapy.
- Most patients receiving the combination of two RAS inhibitors do not obtain any additional benefit compared to monotherapy. In general, avoid combined use of RAS inhibitors. Closely monitor blood pressure, renal function and electrolytes in patients on Benicar and other agents that affect the RAS.
- Do not co-administer aliskiren with Benicar in patients with diabetes. Avoid use of aliskiren with Benicar in patients with renal impairment (GFR <60 ml/min).
- Increases in serum lithium concentrations and lithium toxicity have been reported during concomitant administration of lithium with angiotensin II receptor antagonists, including Benicar. Monitor serum lithium levels during concomitant use.
- Concurrent administration of bile acid sequestering agent colesevelam hydrochloride reduces the systemic exposure and peak plasma concentration of olmesartan.
- Administration of olmesartan at least 4 hours prior to colesevelam hydrochloride decreased the drug interaction effect. Consider administering olmesartan at least 4 hours before the colesevelam hydrochloride dose.
Benicar contraindications, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety
- Benicar can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman.
- Use of drugs that act on the renin-angiotensin system during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy reduces fetal renal function and increases fetal and neonatal morbidity and death.
- There is no information regarding the presence of olmesartan in human milk, the effects on the breastfed infant, or the effects on milk production.
- Because of the potential for adverse effects on the nursing infant, a decision should be made whether to discontinue nursing or discontinue the drug, taking into account the importance of the drug to the mother.
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Related Disease Conditions
What Is the Normal Blood Pressure Range?
Blood pressure is the force applied by the blood over the inner walls of the arteries. Although the average blood pressure for a person remains constant, it shows minor fluctuations throughout the day—declining while relaxing and momentarily increasing while being excited or under stress. An increase in the resting blood pressure can scar, stiffen, or harden the arteries.
Why Is My Bottom Blood Pressure Number High?
Isolated diastolic hypertension (IDH) occurs when your systolic blood pressure is normal, and only your diastolic blood pressure is high (over 80 mm Hg). Causes of high diastolic blood pressure include a high-sodium diet, obesity, lack of physical activity, excessive alcohol consumption, stress and anxiety.
How to Lower My Blood Pressure Immediately
If you face any complications of high blood pressure such as a stroke or heart attack, contact your physician without any delay. Do not attempt home remedies in such grave situations. If you have high blood pressure, without any complications, the first thing to do is to calm down and lie flat.
Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension)
Low blood pressure, also referred to as hypotension, is blood pressure that is so low that it causes symptoms or signs due to the low flow of blood through the arteries and veins. Some of the symptoms of low blood pressure include light-headedness, dizziness, and fainting if not enough blood is getting to the brain. Diseases and medications can also cause low blood pressure. When the flow of blood is too low to deliver enough oxygen and nutrients to vital organs such as the brain, heart, and kidneys; the organs do not function normally and may be permanently damaged.
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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What Causes Your Blood Pressure to Suddenly Get High?
Hypertension or high blood pressure (high BP) is a medical condition where the pressure in the arteries is persistently elevated. The heart pumps blood into the arteries, and it is circulated to all parts of the body. Hypertension develops when the heart constantly needs to exert higher force to deliver the blood to the organs through the arteries.
What Is Considered Stroke-Level High Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure readings above 180/120 mmHg are considered stroke-level, dangerously high and require immediate medical attention.
Is 120 Over 60 a Good Blood Pressure Reading?
If your systolic blood pressure is normal (between 100-120), and your diastolic blood pressure is lower (60 or below), you are considered to have low blood pressure, or isolated diastolic hypotension. Low diastolic blood pressure should be monitored closely.
Can Drinking Water Lower Your Blood Pressure?
Keeping well hydrated by drinking six to eight glasses of water daily (even more if working in hot and humid conditions) is beneficial for the blood pressure. High blood pressure (BP) or hypertension is a condition caused by the persistent high pressure of blood against the walls of arteries. It is also called systolic pressure (constantly greater than 139 mmHg) or diastolic pressure (constantly more than 89 mmHg).
What Causes Low Diastolic Blood Pressure?
A diastolic blood pressure (DBP) of somewhere between 60 and 90 mm Hg is good in older people. Causes of low DBP include bed rest, dehydration, loss of water, alcohol use, hormone deficiencies, allergic reactions, nutritional deficiencies and prolonged standing leading to blood pooling in the legs.
What Does it Mean When the Bottom Number of Your Blood Pressure is Over 100?
Diastolic blood pressure (DBP) is the pressure exerted on the walls of the arteries when the heart muscle relaxes between beats. When the bottom number of blood pressure (diastole) is over 100 mmHg, it may be called diastolic hypertension (DHT).
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Which Is More Important: Systolic or Diastolic Blood Pressure?
Systolic blood pressure is often given more attention as a risk factor for heart disease. However, both systolic and diastolic blood pressure are equally important in monitoring the health of your heart.
How Do You Check Your Blood Pressure With Your Fingers?
Most doctors recommend the use of a blood pressure machine to check blood pressure. An individual may check heart rate with their fingers, but not blood pressure.
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High blood pressure (hypertension) means high pressure (tension) in the arteries. Treatment for high blood pressure include lifestyle modifications (alcohol, smoking, coffee, salt, diet, exercise), drugs and medications such as ACE inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, beta blockers, diuretics, calcium channel blockers (CCBs), alpha blockers, clonidine, minoxidil, and Exforge.
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How Is Diastolic Hypertension Treated?
Diastolic hypertension, where only your diastolic blood pressure is elevated, may be treated with lifestyle changes such as weight loss, reducing your sodium intake or alcohol consumption, and quitting smoking. Medications may be prescribed in more severe cases.
What Is the Blood Pressure of a Very Fit Person?
Studies show that a very fit person who exercises regularly will have a lower resting blood pressure (usually below 120/80 mm Hg) than someone who leads a sedentary lifestyle.
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Which Blood Pressure Number Is the Most Important?
The blood that flows through the arteries (blood vessels carrying blood from the heart to other parts of the body) exerts pressure against the arterial walls. The number above (120) is called the systolic blood pressure and the number below (80) is called the diastolic blood pressure. Though both readings are important, many doctors believe that systolic blood pressure is a better predictor of complications of hypertension, such as heart disease or stroke.
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Is A Manual Blood Pressure More Accurate?
Manual blood pressure gives accurate results when used correctly by a trained person. However, manual blood pressure measurement is not the recommended type of blood pressure monitoring for home use because it requires some training.
Hypertension-Related Kidney Disease
Second Source WebMD Medical Reference
Why Does Alcohol Cause Hypertension?
Alcoholic beverages are regular drinks in most parts of the world. No one knows how alcohol causes hypertension, but it may be due to the effects of alcohol endothelium, nervous system, cortisol levels or other body systems.
Is a Diastolic Blood Pressure of 64 mmHg too Low?
Diastolic blood pressure means the blood pressure reading during the phase when your heart relaxes (diastole). Force of the blood against the walls of the arteries (the blood vessels carrying blood from the heart to other sites) in the body is called blood pressure. The heart pumps the blood into the arteries as it contracts (systole).
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Hypertensive Kidney Disease
High blood pressure can damage the kidneys and is one of the leading causes of kidney failure (end-stage renal kidney disease). Kidney damage, like hypertension, can be unnoticeable and detected only through medical tests. If you have kidney disease, you should control your blood pressure. Other treatment options include prescription medications.
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What Are Abnormal Blood Pressure Number Ranges?
Abnormal blood pressure, especially high blood pressure, is a common issue with no initial symptoms. Learn how to keep your blood pressure in the normal range.
Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension) Causes
Low blood pressure (hypotension) occurs when blood pressure drops below the normal range. Low blood pressure can be temporary, or it can be a chronic (long-lasting) condition.
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Can High Blood Pressure Hurt My Eyes?
Unfortunately, yes. Suffering from untreated or poorly controlled high blood pressure for a long time can be detrimental to your eyes. Several eye diseases are directly or indirectly caused by high blood pressure (hypertension).
Can I Check My Blood Pressure With My Phone?
The force of the blood against the walls of the blood vessels carrying blood from the heart to other sites in the body (the arteries) is called blood pressure. The heart pumps blood into the arteries as it contracts (systole).
What Are the New Blood Pressure Guidelines for Seniors?
Hypertension or high blood pressure (high BP) is a medical condition where the pressure in the blood vessels is persistently elevated. The heart pumps blood into the arteries, which circulate blood to all parts of the body. In cases of high blood pressure, the heart has to work harder to push the blood column ahead.
How Do I Know If I Have High or Low Blood Pressure Numbers?
High or low blood pressure can lead to serious health conditions. Learn more about what you should do if your pressure is outside the ideal range.
What Is “Normal” Blood Pressure?
Normal blood pressure is when the pressure is less than or upto 120/80 mmHg. The value 120 denotes the systolic pressure, and the value 80 denotes the diastolic pressure.
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Most people with high blood pressure have no signs or symptoms, even if blood pressure readings reach dangerously high levels. In some patients, symptoms may include fatigue, headaches, dizziness, confusion, sweating, chest pain and vision problems.
Hypertension-Induced Chronic Kidney Disease
Hypertension-induced chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a long-standing kidney condition that develops over time due to persistent or uncontrolled high blood pressure (hypertension).
Preeclampsia (Pregnancy Induced Hypertension)
Preeclampsia is related to increased blood pressure and protein in the mother's urine. Preeclampsia typically begins after the 20th week of pregnancy. When preeclampsia causes seizures, it is termed "eclampsia" and is the second leading cause of maternal death of in the US. Preeclampsia is the leading cause of fetal complications. Risk factors for preeclampsia include high blood pressure, obesity, multiple births, and women with preexisting medical conditions such as diabetes, kidney disease, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, or scleroderma. Pregnancy planning and lifestyle changes may reduce the risk of preeclampsia during pregnancy.
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What Is High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)?
High blood pressure or hypertension is when the blood pressure readings consistently range from 140 or higher for systolic or 90 or higher for diastolic. Blood pressure readings above 180/120 mmHg are dangerously high and require immediate medical attention.
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