Amlodipine – swelling of feet, difficult to walk

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I am aged 55, male, and I suffered a stroke five years ago, with a loss of much of my eyesight. I find these days that even the slightest stumble, for example hitting an uneven paving slab, can cause my feet to swell up badly. Three weeks ago, I was unable to walk, and could only get around the house by hands and knees. I am gradually starting to walk again, but only slowly and with great care. After previous episodes, I have been unable to walk quickly.

I have found, after a visit to the GP, that Amlodipine has a common side-effect of causing swelling in the feet. She seemed to be of the point of view that since it is only a side-effect, it does not really matter. She suggested that it would be a good idea to keep my feet up. Since for fortnight I could not walk, and found it uncomfortable for me even to sit up, this all seemed like a banal statement of the obvious.

I was on 10mg of Amlodipine. I have not dared to try this again since, and now my mobility is gradually improving.

I find it horrifying that this dangerous drug is routinely prescribed. If approximately a tenth of patients prescribed this drug have suffered from abnormal swelling of the feet, and other extremities (peripheral edema), and if many others suffer from other nasty side-effects, the cure seems worse than the illness. Surely there must be less aggressive drugs?

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  • Posted

    hello colinim

    I Had similar problems to you, which I have posted about on the forum

    I stopped taking Amlodipine 5mg after my legs and ankles swelled up very badly, and at one time I couldn’t walk as my legs were so swollen. I also had a very itchy rash around both my ankles, which I must of infected it at sometime because it turned into Cellulitis , which I now have antibiotics for.

    My GP changed the Amlodipine for Losartan 50mg and Furosemide 40mg ( a diuretic ) to , drain the access water build up in my legs and I also take Atorvastatin 20mg to lower my Cholesterol.

    My High Blood Pressure was discovered in February this year and it taken this long to get near to some sort of normality.

    I feel I have aged 10 years since being diagnosed with HBP, I believe a lot of my problems were due to taking Amlodipine at the start, the rest of the time has been trying to get rid of the problems this drug has left behind

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  • Posted

    Paul,

    Thanks for your comments. Some recent updates, which may or may not be of use to you. I wrote my notes a couple of years ago.

    I lost confidence with my GPs and hospitals, mainly through this Amlodipine issue. Quite clearly this medicine is making me seriously worse, and in the end, I decided not to take any pills or tablets. Risky maybe, but it works, or at least it is much better than it was before. I have lost a couple of stone, without pain, once I was able to drop the Amlodipine, and I am able to get around again, even if not as well as I used to be. I am hoping that I will be able to lose another stone, to get back to what I would regard to be an acceptable weight.

    My blood pressure has not disappeared, but I feel I an in much more control of my life, when in effect I was badly disabled, and could not leave the house.I feel that it is only when I have stabilised my weight that I will be able to regain my general health and fitness.

    All the best, Colin

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  • Posted

    I got put on it when ramipril at 10 mg didnt hold my BP under control, and although the numbers improved, Im gobsmacked at how much swelling of my ankle and calf i get, now getting foot pain after about 2 months on it.  I take a battery of meds daily, for BP, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and Behcets disease p- so Im a shoe-in for any passing autoimmune nonsense, and come from a family hit by strokes and BP issues. Feet up is one thing, but it makes life awkward!  I have also been told that on journeys I should take regular breaks and change position so as not to sit too long without moving legs to re-distribute the fluid, as my heart is unlikely to be able to pump it back uphill against gravity in the relaxed state my veins get into on amlodipine - I may have misunderstood him, but that was the gist of what GP told me!  good luck!  ps I hate the insomnia, and can now wee for England in the small hours....
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    • Posted

      Kathryn,

      Sorry not to have replied earlier. It sounds rough. How are things now?

      Yes, it makes sense to keep your feet high, up to the hight of the heart, and to keep mobile. I even had problems at one stage with the swelling of my wrists, and I had to be on a sling, to keep my feet high.

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  • Posted

    I have had swelling of the ankles while taking 5mg. The doctor has just put me up to 10mg - my blood pressure was 130/90 which I didn't think was too bad. I am worried about the ankles getting worse. The back of my legs feel tight too.
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    • Posted

      Hi Nannylynn

      Keep an eye on your ankles and the back of your legs swelling. I was on 5mg Amlodipine. my legs and ankles swelled up very badly, and at one time I couldn’t walk as my legs were so swollen. I also had a very itchy rash around both my ankles, which I must of infected by scraching it at sometime, because it turned into Cellulitis.

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  • Posted

    I have stopped taking amp. I have started taking grape seed extract and go Dr.'s tomorrow. I have no intention of taking it again no matter what the Dr says.

     

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    • Posted

      Nannylynn,

      Good luck in this!

      In my experience, the doctors tend to underestimate how important it is for your legs, ankles and feet are for you to move around, and that you are not in pain. What is the point of having possibly a slight improvement in blood pressure (and maybe even this can be open to question), when you are at least temporarily bed-ridden?

      Press hard for this. Physical mobility is vital for a good quality of life.

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    • Posted

      I agree with you Colinim. I still have problems 6 months on from taking Amlodipine . In fact I felt quite fit back in January but feel I have aged about five years since taking a dug that was meant to help me
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  • Posted

    I am 61 yrs old semi-retired and started to take amlodipine three weeks ago in the second week my left foot and ankle swelled up bad I could barely put a shoe on. I stopped taking the medication for one week now but still have the swollen feet and ankles. How long does it take to get this drug out of your system? I am elevating my legs and applying ice and also doing epson salt foot baths. I have reached a point of exasperation with this problem as it stops me from doing what I need to do. If anyone can let me know how long before I get back to no swelling? Thanks! So happy I found this site.
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    • Posted

      Hi Carlos,

      In all it took about 2 weeks for my ankles and legs to settle back down to normal but I know that it has taken longer for some people. I hope this sorts itself out soon.

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  • Posted

    I took Amlodipine 5mg. for a week and had to stop because of too many side effects.  My eyelids and legs are still swelling after 10 days.  I am wondering how long before the side effects go away.  Horrifying drug.

     

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  • Posted

    Hello my Dr. put me on amlodipine at the beginning of February 2018 I didn't notice my calfs , ankles , and feet were swollen like I was a pregnant woman . Also I had swollen belly I'm always feeling bloated and can't breath he told me it was the medication and he took me off it . I read that the swelling in my lower belly was edema the same swelling that was in my feet and legs . I didn't start having this problem until I started taking that medication. He took me off the meds as of March 15 2018 today is March 28 and my feet and legs are still swollen and I still have lower belly edema . HOW LONG DOES THIS MED TAKE TO LEAVE MY BODY SO I CAN HO BACK TO NORMAL HELPPP . P.S. MY DR TOLD ME A WEEK BUT ITS BEEN 15 DAYS AND IM STILL MISERABLE 😟

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    • Posted

      It's awful isn't it! I feel I am still in so much pain at the backs of my ankles the bone feels too fragile to hold my weight in the morning I have been off them for a couple of months the swelling went but terrible pain staying.

      The doctor quickly took me off them and even the pharmacy called me to see how I was getting on any side effects etc . I think we have been part of a trial !! I never had this problem before. They put my dad in them and I nagged him to get something else

      His skin was so swollen and stretched I could see what was going to happen next with his skin splitting! God awful medication. I elevate my legs every morning & night I do hope the pain clears for us all x

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  • Posted

    I HAD THE SAME EXPERIENCE WHEN I went on this drug AMLOPIDINE going from being fine with walking to not being able to walk after just 3 pills!! It has lasted a long time 2 weeks and I HAVE PAIN IN my thigh and the medical profession do not seem to be very vocal about how awful the side effects are or just how many people are affected. I despair as it seems all the drugs have side effects but this is the worse.

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    • Posted

      Patricia,

      I have since been taken off of AMLOPINDINE and the swell is gone, so you may want to see if your doctor will get you something else that will work.

      Report Reply

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