Description and Brand Names

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

US Brand Name

  1. Atacand

Descriptions


Candesartan is used alone or together with other medicines to treat high blood pressure (hypertension) in adults and children 1 to 16 years of age. High blood pressure adds to the workload of the heart and arteries. If it continues for a long time, the heart and arteries may not function properly. This can damage the blood vessels of the brain, heart, and kidneys, resulting in a stroke, heart failure, or kidney failure. Lowering blood pressure can reduce the risk of strokes and heart attacks.

Candesartan is also used to treat heart failure in adults and cut down on the number of hospital visits for heart problems.

Candesartan is an angiotensin II receptor blocker (ARB). It works by blocking the action of a substance in the body that causes the blood vessels to tighten. As a result, candesartan relaxes the blood vessels. This lowers blood pressure and increases the supply of blood and oxygen to the heart.

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Tablet

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated pediatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of candesartan to treat hypertension in children 1 to 16 years of age.

Use of candesartan to treat hypertension in newborn babies and infants up to 1 year of age is not recommended.

No information is available on the relationship of age to the effects of candesartan to treat heart failure in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of candesartan in the elderly. However, elderly patients may be more sensitive to the effects of candesartan than younger adults.

Pregnancy

Information about this candesartan-oral-route
Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters D Studies in pregnant women have demonstrated a risk to the fetus. However, the benefits of therapy in a life threatening situation or a serious disease, may outweigh the potential risk.

Breastfeeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Benazepril
  • Captopril
  • Enalapril
  • Enalaprilat
  • Fosinopril
  • Lisinopril
  • Lithium
  • Moexipril
  • Perindopril Erbumine
  • Quinapril
  • Ramipril
  • Trandolapril

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Aceclofenac
  • Acemetacin
  • Amtolmetin Guacil
  • Aspirin
  • Bromfenac
  • Bufexamac
  • Celecoxib
  • Choline Salicylate
  • Clonixin
  • Dexibuprofen
  • Dexketoprofen
  • Diclofenac
  • Diflunisal
  • Dipyrone
  • Etodolac
  • Etofenamate
  • Etoricoxib
  • Felbinac
  • Fenoprofen
  • Fepradinol
  • Feprazone
  • Floctafenine
  • Flufenamic Acid
  • Flurbiprofen
  • Ibuprofen
  • Ibuprofen Lysine
  • Indomethacin
  • Ketoprofen
  • Ketorolac
  • Lornoxicam
  • Loxoprofen
  • Lumiracoxib
  • Meclofenamate
  • Mefenamic Acid
  • Meloxicam
  • Morniflumate
  • Nabumetone
  • Naproxen
  • Nepafenac
  • Niflumic Acid
  • Nimesulide
  • Oxaprozin
  • Oxyphenbutazone
  • Parecoxib
  • Phenylbutazone
  • Piketoprofen
  • Piroxicam
  • Pranoprofen
  • Proglumetacin
  • Propyphenazone
  • Proquazone
  • Rofecoxib
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Salsalate
  • Sodium Salicylate
  • Sulindac
  • Tenoxicam
  • Tiaprofenic Acid
  • Tolfenamic Acid
  • Tolmetin
  • Valdecoxib

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Diabetes patients who are also taking aliskiren (Tekturna®) or
  • Patients with kidney disease who are also taking aliskiren (Tekturna®)—Should not be used in patients with these conditions.
  • Electrolyte imbalances (eg, low levels of salt or sodium in the body) or
  • Fluid imbalances (caused by dehydration, vomiting, or diarrhea)—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Kidney disease or
  • Liver disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal of the medicine from the body.

Proper Use

This medicine comes with a patient information insert. Read the information carefully and make sure you understand it before taking this medicine. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.

In addition to the use of this medicine, treatment for your high blood pressure may include weight control and changes in the types of foods you eat, especially foods high in sodium (salt). Your doctor will tell you which of these are most important for you. You should check with your doctor before changing your diet.

Many patients who have high blood pressure will not notice any signs of the problem. In fact, many may feel normal. It is very important that you take your medicine exactly as directed and that you keep your appointments with your doctor even if you feel well.

Remember that this medicine will not cure your high blood pressure, but it does help control it. You must continue to take it as directed if you expect to lower your blood pressure and keep it down. You may have to take high blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life. If high blood pressure is not treated, it can cause serious problems such as heart failure, blood vessel disease, stroke, or kidney disease.

This medicine also works best when there is a constant amount in the blood. To help keep the amount constant, do not miss any doses. Also, it is best to take the doses at the same time each day.

You may take this medicine with or without food.

If your child cannot swallow the tablets, an oral liquid may be given. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about this.

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (tablets):
    • For high blood pressure:
      • Adults—At first, 16 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may change your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 32 mg per day.
      • Children 6 to 16 years of age and weighing more than 50 kilograms (kg)—The usual starting dose for the tablet is 8 to 16 mg once a day. Your doctor may change your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 32 mg per day.
      • Children 6 to 16 years of age and weighing less than 50 kg—The usual starting dose for the tablet is 4 to 8 mg once a day. Your doctor may change your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 16 mg per day.
      • Children 1 to 5 years of age—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The dose is usually 0.05 to 0.4 mg per kg of body weight per day.
      • Children younger than 1 year of age—Use is not recommended.
    • For heart failure:
      • Adults—At first, 4 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may increase your dose as needed. However, the dose is usually not more than 32 mg per day.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Use the mixed oral liquid within 30 days after first opening the bottle. Do not freeze.

Precautions

It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child at regular visits to make sure that this medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.

Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using this medicine, tell your doctor right away.

Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may also occur, especially when you get up from a lying or sitting position or if you have been taking a diuretic (water pill). Make sure you know how you react to this medicine before you drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are dizzy or not alert. If you feel dizzy, lie down so you do not faint. Then sit for a few moments before standing to prevent the dizziness from returning.

Check with your doctor right away if you or your child become sick while taking this medicine, especially with severe or continuing nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. These conditions may cause you to lose too much water or salt and may lead to low blood pressure. You can also lose water by sweating, so drink plenty of water during exercise or in hot weather.

Before having any kind of surgery (including dental surgery) or emergency treatment, tell the doctor or dentist in charge that you are taking this medicine.

Ask your doctor before you use medicines, supplements, or salt substitutes that contain potassium.

Black patients may have a smaller response to the blood pressure-lowering effects of candesartan.

Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This especially includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines for appetite control, asthma, colds, cough, hay fever, or sinus problems, since they may tend to increase your blood pressure.

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

Rare

  1. Arm, back, or jaw pain
  2. bleeding gums
  3. chest pain or discomfort
  4. chest tightness or heaviness
  5. chills
  6. cough or hoarseness
  7. dizziness
  8. fainting
  9. fast or irregular heartbeat
  10. fever
  11. joint pain
  12. large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  13. lightheadedness
  14. lower back or side pain
  15. nausea
  16. nosebleeds
  17. pain or discomfort in the arms, jaw, back, or neck
  18. painful or difficult urination
  19. shortness of breath
  20. sweating
  21. swelling of the feet or lower legs
  22. vomiting

Incidence not known

  1. Abdominal or stomach pain
  2. black, tarry stools
  3. bloody urine
  4. coma
  5. confusion
  6. convulsions
  7. dark urine
  8. decreased urine output
  9. difficult or troubled breathing
  10. general feeling of tiredness or weakness
  11. headache
  12. hives or welts
  13. increased blood pressure
  14. increased thirst
  15. itching
  16. light-colored stools
  17. loss of appetite
  18. muscle pain or cramps
  19. nervousness
  20. numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or lips
  21. pale skin
  22. redness of the skin
  23. skin rash
  24. sore throat
  25. sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
  26. swelling of the face, ankles, or hands
  27. unusual bleeding or bruising
  28. unusual tiredness or weakness
  29. upper right abdominal or stomach pain
  30. weakness or heaviness of the legs
  31. weight gain
  32. yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  1. Ear congestion or pain
  2. head congestion
  3. runny or stuffy nose
  4. sneezing

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.