Norvasc is a calcium channel blocker that is used in the treatment of hypertension and angina. It widens the dilated blood vessels and makes it easier for the heart to pump thereby lowering its workload and preventing angina pectoris.
Norvasc is available in tablets for internal use. It is usually taken once a day. Norvasc may cause a stomach upset. Take Norvasc with food or milk. Talk to your doctor before using salt substitutes containing potassium. If your doctor prescribes a diet with the low salt or sodium content, follow these directions carefully.
THE MECHANISM OF ACTION
Amlodipine belongs to the class of medications called calcium channel blockers. These drugs block transporting of calcium into the smooth muscle cells lining the coronary arteries and other arteries of the body. Calcium plays an important role in muscle contraction; the drug blocks transporting of calcium, relaxes artery muscles and dilates coronary arteries and other arteries of the body. By relaxing coronary arteries, amlodipine is useful in preventing chest pain (stenocardia), as a result, the coronary artery spasm disappears. Muscles relax lining the arteries and other parts of the body and lowers blood pressure, which reduces the load on the heart. Reducing the heart burden, the need of the heart muscle for oxygen reduces as well, helping to prevent stenocardia for patients with coronary heart disease.
If you miss a dose of Norvasc then you may take it as soon as you remember and adjust the remaining doses accordingly. However, if it is nearly time for the next dose then you may skip this dose and continue with the regular dosage. Do not take a double dose to make up for the missed dose.
The preparation is kept at controlled room temperature 59 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 30 degrees C), it is better to keep this medicine in close light-resistant containers.
A Norvasc overdose may require immediate medical attention as it causes symptoms like dizziness, weakness, chest pain, shortness of breath, fainting, unusually fast or slow heartbeat, coma, slurred speech, and confusion. Overdose of Norvasc may cause excessive peripheral vasodilatation with marked hypotension and possibly a reflex tachycardia.
Discuss with your doctor about any prior medical condition that you may have including allergies to medicines, food or other substances, liver, kidney or heart disease, blood vessels disease, such as sick sinus syndrome, aortic stenosis, heart failure, low blood pressure, or coronary artery disease. You might not be able to take the drug or might require a special dosage adjustment if you have any of the above mentioned conditions.
If you are pregnant or suspect that you are, then stop using Norvasc and contact your doctor immediately. The drug is in the FDA pregnancy category C.
This means that studies in animals have revealed adverse effects on the fetus whilst there are no controlled studies in women.
It is unknown whether Norvasc is secreted in breast milk. Avoid breast feeding while using the drug.
Some of the common side effects of are headache, dizziness, nausea, diarrhea, vivid or abnormal dreams, flushing, abdominal pain, change in appetite, or increased or difficult urination. Please contact your doctor if the symptoms persist or become bothersome.
Other severe side effects include an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing, closing of your throat, swelling of your lips/tongue/face, or hives), an irregular heartbeat, shortness of breath, chest pain, severe dizziness or fainting, psychosis, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes), or swelling of the legs or ankles.
You must seek medical attention immediately if any of these side effects occur.
Your doctor can provide more information about Norvasc.