Lisinopril: Side Effects, Overdose & Drug Interactions

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  • 0:04 What Is Lisinopril?
  • 0:44 Side Effects
  • 1:47 Overdoses
  • 2:58 Drug Interactions
  • 4:06 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Justine Fritzel

Justine has been a Registered Nurse for 10 years and has a Bachelor's of Science in Nursing degree.

Lisinopril is a medication used to treat high blood pressure. As with all medications, there are side effects and drug interactions you should be aware of. In this lesson, you'll learn about these considerations.

What Is Lisinopril?

Lisinopril is a prescription medication that is used to treat hypertension, or high blood pressure, and heart failure. It's also used after a heart attack and in chronic and diabetic kidney disease. It's classified as an ACE inhibitor, which stands for angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor.

By inhibiting the angiotensin-converting enzyme, it results in relaxed blood vessels and decreased reabsorption of fluid by the kidneys. The end result is decreased blood volume and decreased blood pressure.

Although lisinopril is a great medication, there are always side effects and drug interactions that you need to be aware of. Let's look at side effects of lisinopril next.

Side Effects

Since lisinopril is used to decrease blood pressure, it's easy to understand how some of the side effects can be hypotension, or low blood pressure, and dizziness. As we briefly discussed above, lisinopril acts on the kidneys so it's also understandable that another side effect can impact lab values that are affected by the kidneys' functioning.

Other common side effects include headache, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. You may find you are sensitive to light or may develop a cough or upper respiratory infection from lisinopril.

There are additional side effects that are very serious but luckily do not occur as commonly.

Serious side effects include severe hypotension or kidney impairment or failure. As with any medication, you may have an anaphylactic allergic response. Another serious side effect of lisinopril is angioedema, which is rapid swelling that occurs underneath the skin or mucosa. This can occur in the head, neck, or intestines.

These serious side effects are medical emergencies and require immediate medical attention.

Overdoses

Your doctor will prescribe the dose of lisinopril that you should take. An overdose is defined as anything more than the dose that was prescribed. So. what happens if you overdose on lisinopril?

The extent of the overdose determines the level of harm done. An acute overdose would be if you took a one time dose that exceeded the prescribed dose. In this situation, you'll experience a drop in your blood pressure that results in feeling dizzy and extremely weak. You may possibly faint. These symptoms in themselves aren't significantly harmful, but the symptoms could cause a life threatening situation. For example, you may fall and break your hip or receive some other major injury. Or, you may be driving a vehicle when these symptoms occur, which can result in a car accident that could potentially kill you or someone else.

A chronic overdose could result if you are taking more lisinopril than the prescribed dose for an extended amount of time. This can result in more harm to your body because it will be an extended time of low blood pressure, which results in oxygen deprivation to your body. This can lead to organ damage such as renal failure. It's unlikely that organ failure would occur with the appropriate medical care. But, if you're not seeking any medical care, this could happen.

Drug Interactions

It's important to always discuss all medications that you are taking with your physician and pharmacist in order to be aware of any possible drug interactions. Drug interactions occur when the combination of two or more medications result in a higher risk of complications. There are always possible drug interactions when taking more than one medication.

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