Brand Name:Accupril, Altace, Capoten, Inhibace, Lotensin, Mavik, Monopril, Prinivi, Vasotec, Zestril

Prescription needed: Yes

What is this drug used for?

Ramipril is used to treat high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, and some kidney diseases (e.g. nephropathy). It is also used to decrease the chances of heart attack or stroke in people who are at high risk (e.g. recent heart attack, heart disease or angina).

Is there any reason not to take this drug?

Do not take this medication if you are allergic to it or similar drugs such as benazepril, captopril, cilazapril, enalapril, fosinopril, lisinopril, moexipril, perindopril, quinapril, or trandolapril.

Do not take this medication if you are pregnant , have experienced a side effect to ramipril or ramipril-like drugs called angioedema or have a kidney condition called bilateral renal artery stenosis. Tell your doctor specifically if you have or have ever had:

  • aortic stenosis
  • high levels of potassium in your blood or taking potassium supplements
  • low blood pressure (hypotension)
  • problems with coughing
  • problems with your kidney or liver
  • problems with severe dehydration

What about possible side effects?

The most common side effects are:

  • dizziness, lightheadedness
  • dry cough
  • feeling tired
  • high levels of potassium in the blood
  • loss of taste
  • low blood pressure

Other less common and possibly severe side effects include:

  • swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs (angioedema) – Call your doctor immediately
  • rare cases of hepatitis (inflammation of the liver) and jaundice (yellowing of skin and eyes) have been reported. Jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes) – Call your doctor immediately

This is not a complete list of side effects. If you are concerned about these or other unusual symptoms while taking this medication, ask your doctor and/or pharmacist for more information and advice.

What if I am taking other drugs?

Always provide your doctor with a list of all other drugs you are taking (including over-the-counter medications and herbal/natural products) as they may interact with and/or may change the safety or effectiveness of either drug. Tell your doctor specifically if you are taking any of these drugs as these are the most common interactions and he/she may need to make changes or monitor you more closely
  • ASA & other anti-inflammatories (e.g. ibuprofen, voltaren, diclofenac) (e.g ibuprofen, naproxen, voltaren) – Can increase the chances of problems with your kidney and may decrease how well ramipril works to lower blood pressure and treat congestive heart failure.
  • lithium (can increase the amount of lithium in the blood)
  • potassium supplements, spironolactone, amiloride, trimaterene (increase the chances of having high levels of potassium in the blood)
  • water pills (e.g. hydrochlorothiazide, furosemide)
  • cyclosporine (may increase the chance of having problems with your kidney)
  • Other medications to treat high blood pressure (May increase your chances for experiencing low blood pressure)
  • If you are taking this drug to treat high blood pressure, be careful of certain over-the-counter medicines that may increase your blood pressure. These include some cough and cold medicines. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

This is not a complete list of drug interactions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist to review your list of medications.

Other information:

Children: Not recommended.

Seniors: are more sensitive to the effects of the medication. Lower doses are usually required, especially at the start of therapy.

Pregnancy: Do not take this drug as it can cause birth defects. Talk to your doctor.

Women who are nursing: Safety has not been established. Talk to your doctor.

People who drive or operate machinery: should not do so until they know the impact ramipril has on them personally. This drug may cause dizziness as a result of lower blood pressure.

Overdose: if you experience any unusual reactions or if you seriously exceed the recommended dosage, call your doctor or 911.

Stopping the drug. Talk to your doctor before you stop taking this drug. Stopping the drug will likely cause your blood pressure to increase or your other symptoms due to congestive heart failure to return.

If you miss a dose: take it as soon as you remember. If next dose is scheduled within six hours, take a single dose now and skip next scheduled dose. After that, resume your regular schedule.

Storage conditions: closed container; cool, dry location away from excess moisture (not in the bathroom); always out of reach of children.

Dietary precautions: in order to help control your blood pressure, your doctor may suggest that you reduce the amount of salt in your diet. Avoid salt substitutes as they sometimes contain potassium.