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enalapril (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking enalapril (Vasotec)?

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to enalapril, or similar medicines such as such as benazepril (Lotensin), captopril (Capoten Capozide), fosinopril (Monopril), lisinopril (Prinivil, Prinzide, Zestoretic, Zestril), moexipril (Univasc, Uniretic), perindopril (Aceon), quinapril (Accupril), ramipril (Altace), trandolapril (Mavik, Tarka), and others.

To make sure you can safely take enalapril, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • kidney disease (or if you are on dialysis);
  • liver disease;
  • heart disease or congestive heart failure (unless you are taking enalapril for this condition);
  • diabetes; or
  • a history of blood clot or stroke (including "mini-stroke").

FDA pregnancy category D. Do not use enalapril if you are pregnant. Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. Enalapril can cause injury or death to the unborn baby if you take the medicine during your second or third trimester. Use effective birth control while taking this medication.

Enalapril can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while you are using enalapril.

How should I take enalapril (Vasotec)?

Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.

Enalapril can be taken with or without food.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. Measure the liquid with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Conditions that may cause very low blood pressure include: vomiting, diarrhea, heavy sweating, heart disease, dialysis, a low salt diet, or taking diuretics (water pills). Follow your doctor's instructions about the type and amount of liquids you should drink while taking enalapril. Tell your doctor if you have a prolonged illness that causes diarrhea or vomiting.

Your blood pressure will need to be checked often. Your kidney or liver function may also need to be tested. Visit your doctor regularly.

If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using enalapril. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.

If you are being treated for high blood pressure, keep using this medication even if you feel well. High blood pressure often has no symptoms. You may need to use blood pressure medication for the rest of your life.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.

Store the liquid medicine in the refrigerator, do not freeze. Throw away any unused liquid after 30 days.

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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