Plendil is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). Lowering high blood pressure helps prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems. Felodipine is known as a calcium channel blocker. By blocking calcium, this medication relaxes and widens blood vessels so blood can flow more easily.
How to take
Take this medication by mouth usually once a day on an empty stomach, or as directed by your doctor. If stomach upset occurs, Plendil may be taken with a light meal. Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Swallow this medication whole. Do not crush, chew, or break the tablets, which can destroy the long action of the drug and increase side effects. Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. Remember to use it at the same time each day as directed. It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well. Most people with high blood pressure do not feel sick. This drug is not effective if you use it only when chest pain occurs. It is very important to take this medication regularly as prescribed to help prevent chest pain. Avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while being treated with this medication unless your doctor instructs you otherwise. Grapefruit juice can increase the amount of this medication in your bloodstream. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Plendil is an oral calcium- channel blocker (CCB) of the dihydropyridine (DHP) class. Other calcium channel blockers in the DHP class include nifedipine (Procardia, Adalat), amlodipine (Norvasc), nisoldipine (Sular), nicardipine (Cardene), and isradipine (Dynacirc). Calcium is necessary for muscle cells to contract. Plendil prevents calcium from being released within the muscle cells of the small arteries and thereby causes the muscles to relax and the arteries to dilate or expand. Plendil has little or no effect on the muscles of veins or the heart . Plendil was approved by the FDA in 1991.
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.
Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.
Before taking Plendil, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: heart disease (e.g., congestive heart failure), liver disease, swelling of the arms and legs (edema). Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking this medication. This drug may make you dizzy; use caution engaging in activities requiring alertness such as driving or using machinery. Limit alcoholic beverages. To minimize dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a seated or lying position. Caution is advised when using this drug in the elderly because they may be more sensitive to its side effects, especially dizziness. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
Possible Side Effects
Dizziness, lightheadedness, headache, flushing, or stomach upset may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these serious side effects occur: swelling of the hands/ankles/feet (edema). Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: new or worsening chest pain, fast/irregular heartbeat. Although unlikely, Plendil may cause mild swelling of the gums. Massage your gums and brush and floss your teeth regularly to minimize this problem. See your dentist regularly. Tell your doctor immediately if any of these highly unlikely but very serious side effects occur: fainting. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
Do not share this medication with others. Lifestyle changes such as stress reduction programs, exercise, and dietary changes may increase the effectiveness of this medicine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about lifestyle changes that might benefit you. Have your blood pressure checked regularly while taking this medication. It may be best to learn how to monitor your own blood pressure. Discuss with your doctor and inform him/her of your blood pressure readings.