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- What is valsartan, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for valsartan?
- What are the side effects of valsartan?
- What is the dosage for valsartan?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with valsartan?
- Is valsartan safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about valsartan?
What is valsartan, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
WARNING [update 10/15/2019]: Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration posted a warning letter to Torrent Pharmaceuticals in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India. Torrent manufactures losartan potassium tablets and has been one subject of an ongoing global investigation into nitrosamine impurities in angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) such as valsartan, losartan and irbesartan.
The warning letter outlines several manufacturing violations at Torrent’s Taluka-Kadi, Indrad, Gujarat facility, including failure to follow written procedures for production and process control and failure to adequately investigate batch discrepancies. Failure to correct these violations may result in further action by the agency. The warning letter is another result of the agency’s ongoing investigation.
FDA reminds patients taking recalled ARBs to continue taking their current medicine until their pharmacist provides a replacement or their doctor prescribes a different medication that treats the same condition.
What is valsartan, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Valsartan is an oral medication that is used to treat high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. It belongs to a class of drugs called angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) which also includes irbesartan (Avapro), losartan (Cozaar), and candesartan (Atacand). Angiotensin, formed in the blood by the action of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), is a powerful chemical that attaches to angiotensin receptors found in many tissues but primarily on smooth muscle cells of blood vessels. Angiotensin's attachment to the receptors causes the blood vessels to narrow (vasoconstrict) which leads to an increase in blood pressure (hypertension). Valsartan blocks the angiotensin receptor. By blocking the action of angiotensin, valsartan dilates blood vessels and reduces blood pressure. Valsartan was approved by the FDA in December 1996.
What are the uses for valsartan?
What are the side effects of valsartan?
Valsartan is generally well-tolerated. The most common side effects are:
Other important side effects are:
What is the dosage for valsartan?
The usual dose of valsartan for adults with high blood pressure is 80 to 160 mg once daily. The maximum dose is 320 mg daily. Maximum blood pressure reduction occurs within 4 weeks. For congestive heart failure, the usual dose is 40 mg twice daily. The doses may be increased to 80-160 mg twice daily. The initial dose after a heart attack is 20 mg twice daily. The dose may be increased to 160 mg twice daily if tolerated without side effects.
Which drugs or supplements interact with valsartan?
Combining valsartan with potassium-sparing diuretics (for example., spironolactone (Aldactone), triamterene, amiloride), potassium supplements, or salt substitutes containing potassium may lead to hyperkalemia (elevated potassium in the blood) and in heart failure patients, it increases serum creatinine, a blood test used for monitoring function of the kidneys.
Combining valsartan or other ARBs 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 are usually reversible. There have been reports that aspirin and other NSAIDs such as ibuprofen (Advil, Children's Advil/Motrin, Medipren, Motrin, Nuprin, PediaCare Fever, etc.), indomethacin (Indocin, Indocin-SR), and naproxen (Anaprox, Naprelan, Naprosyn, Aleve) may reduce the effects of ARBs.
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Is valsartan safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
When used in the second or third trimester of pregnancy , valsartan and similar drugs can cause injury and even death to the fetus. Valsartan should not be used during pregnancy. When pregnancy is detected, valsartan should be stopped as soon as possible.
It is not known whether valsartan is secreted into human milk. Valsartan is secreted into the milk of rats.
What else should I know about valsartan?
Preparations, storage, generic and prescription information about valsartan
- Valsartan is available as Tablets: 40, 80, 160 and 320 mg. Tablets are scored and can be split.
- Capsules should be stored at room temperature, 15-30 C (59-86 F).
- Valsartan is available in generic form. You need a prescription for Vasartan.
Valsartan (Diovan) is an ARB drug prescribed for the treatment of high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. Review side effects, drug interactions, warnings and precautions, and pregnancy safety information prior to taking this medication.
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Related Disease Conditions
Chronic cough is a cough that does not go away and is generally a symptom of another disorder such as asthma, allergic rhinitis, sinus infection, cigarette smoking, GERD, postnasal drip, bronchitis, pneumonia, medications, and less frequently tumors or other lung disease. Chronic cough treatment is based on the cause, but may be soothed natural and home remedies.
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 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.
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 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.
Febrile seizures, or convulsions caused by fever, can be frightening in small children or infants. However, in general, febrile seizures are harmless. Febrile seizure is not epilepsy. It is estimated that one in every 25 children will have at least one febrile seizure. It is important to know what to do to help your child if he/she has a febrile seizure. Some of the features of a febrile seizure include: losing consciousness, shaking, moving limbs on both sides of the body, lasts 1-2 minutes. Less commonly, a febrile seizure may only affect one side of the body.
Treatment & Diagnosis
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Medications & Supplements
- Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARBs)
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- losartan (Cozaar)
- candesartan cilexetil, Atacand
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- telmisartan, Micardis
- Losartan vs. Valsartan (Differences between Side Effects and Uses)
- Drug Interactions
- losartan and hydrochlorothiazide (Hyzaar)
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Prevention & Wellness
- FDA Says Patients Can Take Tainted Blood Pressure Meds Until Shortages End
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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.