Warnings and Precautions With Candesartan
It is important to be aware of some warnings and precautions with candesartan, including drug interactions, low blood pressure, taking candesartan while pregnant, and possible declines in kidney function. People who have heart, liver, or kidney disease should consult a healthcare provider before taking candesartan. Also let a healthcare provider know if you develop any symptoms such as dizziness, drowsiness, headache, or back pain.
Candesartan: What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking candesartan (Atacand®) if you have:
- Heart disease, including congestive heart failure
- Liver disease, including cirrhosis
- Kidney disease or kidney failure
- Any allergies, including allergies to other angiotensin II receptor blockers, foods, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or trying to become pregnant
- On dialysis
- Having surgery or anesthesia.
Tell your healthcare provider about all the medications you are currently taking, including prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Some Candesartan Warnings and PrecautionsSome candesartan warnings and precautions to be aware of include:
- There are a number of medicines that candesartan can interact with (see Drug Interactions With Candesartan).
- Candesartan may cause extreme low blood pressure in some people. Extreme low blood pressure is more likely to happen in people who are taking a diuretic, who are on dialysis, who have diarrhea or vomiting, who have excessive sweating, or who have congestive heart failure. This is why it is important to drink fluids regularly while taking candesartan. If you have any possible symptoms of low blood pressure, such as dizziness, light-headedness, or fainting, contact your healthcare provider. If you have fainted, stop taking candesartan until you have talked to your healthcare provider.
Also, make sure not to drive, operate any heavy machinery, or perform any other tasks that require alertness before you know how candesartan affects you.
- Candesartan is a pregnancy Category D medicine, meaning that it poses health risks to your unborn child. Let your healthcare provider know if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking candesartan, contact your healthcare provider immediately (see Atacand and Pregnancy for more information).
- While taking candesartan, do not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes with potassium unless you have discussed this with your doctor. This is because in some people taking candesartan, potassium in the blood can increase to dangerous levels.
- This medication may cause a decrease in kidney function, especially in people who are elderly, have kidney disease, have severe congestive heart failure (CHF), or are taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or diuretics (water pills). Your healthcare provider may choose to monitor your kidney function with a blood test while you are taking it. Contact your healthcare provider if you notice a decrease in urination or swelling in your hands, legs, ankles, or feet, which can be signs of kidney problems.
- If you have moderate to severe liver disease, such as cirrhosis, your body may metabolize the candesartan differently than intended. Therefore, your healthcare provider will monitor your situation more closely.
- If you are nursing, it is not known whether or not candesartan passes through your breast milk. Therefore, if you are nursing, talk with your healthcare provider about whether you should stop taking candesartan or stop breastfeeding.