What is lisinopril?
Lisinopril is in a group of drugs called ACE inhibitors. ACE stands for angiotensin converting enzyme.
Lisinopril is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension), congestive heart failure, and to improve survival after a heart attack.
Lisinopril may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Important information about lisinopril
Do not use lisinopril if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby. Stop using lisinopril and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. Drinking alcohol can further lower your blood pressure and may increase certain side effects of lisinopril. Do not use salt substitutes or potassium supplements while taking this medicine, unless your doctor has told you to.
Vomiting, diarrhea, or heavy sweating can cause you to become dehydrated. This can lead to very low blood pressure, electrolyte disorders, or kidney failure while you are taking lisinopril. Drink plenty of water each day while you are taking this medication.
Before taking lisinopril
Do not use this medication if you are allergic to lisinopril or to any other ACE inhibitor, such as benazepril (Lotensin), captopril (Capoten), fosinopril (Monopril), enalapril (Vasotec), moexipril (Univasc), perindopril (Aceon), quinapril (Accupril), ramipril (Altace), or trandolapril (Mavik).
To make sure you can safely take lisinopril, 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; diabetes; or a connective tissue disease such as Marfan syndrome, Sjogren's syndrome, lupus, scleroderma, or rheumatoid arthritis.
If you have diabetes or kidney disease, you may not be able to take lisinopril if you are also taking aliskiren (Tekturna, Tekamlo, Valturna, Amturnide).
FDA pregnancy category D. Do not use lisinopril if you are pregnant. Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant. Lisinopril 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 medicine. It is not known whether lisinopril passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use lisinopril without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
See also: Lisinopril pregnancy and breastfeeding warnings (in more detail)
How should I take lisinopril?
Take lisinopril 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.
Take each dose with a full glass of water.
Lisinopril can be taken with or without food.
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 lisinopril. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time. If you are being treated for high blood pressure, keep using lisinopril 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 this medicine at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
See also: Lisinopril dosage (in more detail)
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include feeling extremely dizzy or light-headed, or fainting.
What should I avoid while taking lisinopril?
Drinking alcohol can further lower your blood pressure and may increase certain side effects of lisinopril. Do not use salt substitutes or potassium supplements while taking lisinopril, unless your doctor has told you to. Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.
Lisinopril side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to lisinopril: hives; severe stomach pain, difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
feeling like you might pass out; urinating less than usual or not at all; swelling, rapid weight gain; fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms; tired feeling, muscle weakness, and pounding or uneven heartbeats; psoriasis (raised, silvery flaking of the skin); chest pain; or high potassium (slow heart rate, weak pulse, muscle weakness, tingly feeling).
Less serious lisinopril side effects may include:
cough; dizziness, drowsiness, headache; depressed mood; nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, upset stomach; or mild skin itching or rash.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
See also: Lisinopril side effects (in more detail)
Lisinopril Dosing Information
Usual Adult Dose for Hypertension:
Initial dose: 10 mg orally once a day, in patients not receiving a diuretic.
Maintenance dose: 20 to 40 mg orally once a day.
Some patients appear to have a further response to 80 mg, but experience with this dose is limited.
Usual Adult Dose for Congestive Heart Failure:
Initial dose: 5 mg orally once a day (If on diuretic, the diuretic dose should be reduced).
Maintenance dose: 5 to 20 mg orally once a day.
Usual Adult Dose for Myocardial Infarction:
Initial dose: 5 mg orally (within 24 hours of the onset of acute myocardial infarction).
Subsequent doses: 5 mg orally after 24 hours.
10 mg orally after 48 hours.
Maintenance dose: 10 mg orally once a day. Dosing should continue for six weeks.
Patients with a low systolic blood pressure (<=120 mm Hg) when treatment is started or during the first 3 days after the infarct should be given a lower 2.5 mg oral dose. If hypotension occurs (systolic blood pressure <=100 mm Hg) a daily maintenance dose of 5 mg may be given with temporary reductions to 2.5 mg if needed. If prolonged hypotension occurs (systolic blood pressure <90 mm Hg for more than 1 hour), lisinopril should be withdrawn.
Usual Adult Dose for Diabetic Nephropathy:
Initial dose: 10 to 20 mg orally once a day.
Maintenance dose: 20 to 40 mg orally once a day.
Dosage may be titrated upward every 3 days.
Usual Geriatric Dose for Hypertension:
Initial dose: 2.5 to 5 mg orally once a day.
Maintenance dose: Dosages should be increased at 2.5 to 5 mg/day increments at 1 to 2 week intervals.
Maximum dose: 40 mg/day.
Usual Pediatric Dose for Hypertension:
Pediatric patients greater than or equal to 6 years of age:
Initial dose: 0.07 mg/kg once daily (Maximum initial dose is 5 mg once daily)
Maintenance dose: Dosage should be adjusted according to blood pressure response at 1 to 2 week intervals.
Maximum dose: Doses above 0.61 mg/kg or greater than 40 mg have not been studied in pediatric patients.
What other drugs will affect lisinopril?
Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:
any other blood pressure medications; gold injections to treat arthritis; lithium (Lithobid, Eskalith); a potassium supplement such as K-Dur, Klor-Con; salt substitutes that contain potassium; insulin or diabetes medication you take by mouth; aspirin or other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn, Naprelan, Treximet), celecoxib (Celebrex), diclofenac (Arthrotec, Cambia, Cataflam, Voltaren, Flector Patch, Pennsaid, Solareze), indomethacin (Indocin), meloxicam (Mobic), and others; or a diuretic (water pill).
This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with lisinopril. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.