I don't know what to do!

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Hi all, before Christmas i took myself off Amlodipine because of horrendous side effects ( which were all the side effects mentioned on here put together... (had been on 5 mg for a fortnight then 10mg for a week  ) now having been to the Dr (for torn ligaments in my arm) they 'insisted' on taking  my BP which I didn't real want  and given me a prescription for Ramipril. I just feel like I am being pushed into this and the thought of yet another set of side effects is causing me more stress not less ( and I am pretty damn stressed already). 

Is Ramipril safe?( if it is why would there be a need for a blood test  to see how it affects my kidneys? that makes me dubious....my kidneys are fine lol ) . I know the Drs are trying to help people, but it just seems that they dish out tablets without even asking WHY my blood pressure might be sky high at the moment  (worry about  finances, work, etc) 

Any thoughts welcome!

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12 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Rose, I can really sympathise with your frustration. I was put on Amlodipine by my doctor, read the side effects and agonised for a week before taking the first tablet.  After a few months I started getting painful swollen wrists and ankles and was changed to Ramipril - the side effects didn't look much better but took them anyway and the pain and swelling just got worse.  My doctor has now diagnosed me with PMR which I am convinced was triggered by the drugs messing around with my body.  So personally I have decided drugs have to be a last resort.  As you say, maybe there are short term reasons why your blood pressure is raised.  For me I have decided that losing weight and exercise are a better route to try and reduce blood pressure but does the doctor suggest such a healthy routine - no way - I am sure they must earn points by prescribing drugs!  At the moment weight loss for me is not easy as I am now on steroids for the PMR but I know that I have no choice as that is the only way to deal with the inflamation.  Hope you find the right answer which works for you Rose.  All the best, Diana
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    • Posted

      Thankyou Diana, I know high BP runs in the family but with the exception of my dad all relatives seem to have made a pretty good age without  tablets. So I think I am just going to forget I ever went this morning, continue trying to lose a bit of weight and enjoy life as much as I can, even if it just small pleasures. 

      I do hope the steroids will help with your PMR, take care

      Rose 

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    • Posted

      Good answer I think Rose. Unfortunately most doctors refer to their little 'black book' which tells them to send you away with a prescription. I know there are many people who don't exhibit side effects on these drugs but if you are unlucky enough to not be one of them I think it is better to try the more natural approach and the sun is shining, spring is on the way - so enjoy.  Diana x
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    • Posted

      Diana, I'm more than intrigued after reading your post.  I succumbed to GCA, the linked condition to PMR, within a couple of weeks of starting Ramipril.  However, in my case, I had suffered during the previous year with body pain that remained undignosed......until GCA came along!  I was then diagnosed with both conditions.  I considered that Ramipril may have been the trigger for GCA because of putting me on it when PMR inflammation had been left coursing through my body without treatment. 

      I am in remission from both conditions and came off steroids coming up for 3 years ago.  I can imagine how difficult it is for you to tackle your weight whilst on steroids, but avoiding refined carbs and processed meat, and salt can help, whilst sticking to as many known anti-inflammatory foods as possible.  Also a daily walk as far as your pain allows will help.  I'm probably boring you 'cos you've probably already 'read all about it' in the PMR forum!

      Good luck.

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  • Posted

    Hi Rose,I was put on ramipril Dec 2013 for blood pressure.then it was "upped" to 10 mg after 1 month. I've managed ok because I didn't have the main side effect which seems to be the dry cough, but did get shoulder pain.

    However last September they put me on amlodipine as well (5mg) then doubled it to 10 mg after 2 weeks because my bp wasn't dropping enough.

       Since then the side effects have been awful from swollen feet & ankles to no energy & aching joints. 

     I know what you mean about dr's just saying' try this tablet", the when they don't get the result they want say "we'll increase the dose".  

    This week I've started halving  my amlodipine tablet & hope to come off them altogether.

    All I can say is, I had awful side effects on amlodipine but found very minor ones on ramipril.  I do agree with you that its stress that gets your bp up.Now if they brought a tablet out for that.

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    • Posted

      just an update, gave up reducing my amlodipine dose.after 3 days my bp went from143/62 to 175/92. I'd rather have swollen joints than another stroke.
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  • Posted

    Hi Rose and welcome to the club of awkward BP patients!  Well that must be how we are perceived by the GPs and consultants who are trying to treat those of us who don't respond to the medicines as we should!

    I'm in the 'particularly awkward' category because I have been tried on 6 different BP medications, all of which have given me such horrid side effects, including Amlodipine and Ramipril that really affected my quality of life.  The one I'm taking now is giving me no discernible side effects but is failing to reduce my BP

    Having said that, I know many people who are taking such drugs with no side effects whatsoever, including my hubby who takes the lower doses of both Amlodipine and Ramipril with no problems.  He did initially encounter the swelling ankle problem when they increased Amlodipine from 5mg to 10mg but  the GP reduced it back down and added in low dose Ramipril and all is well.

    You haven't mentioned how high your blood presure is, but the bottom line is that if it is raised in spite of being of normal weight, eating the right foods, having the right exercise, you will need treatment to lower it.

    Ramipril is generally considered safe for the kidneys and many people with kidney problems and high BP are put on Ramipril to protect their kidneys.  At least that is what two consultants have told me but I know the leaflet says differently and the need for blood tests speaks for itself in my opinion.  But as long as those blood tests are carried out and no abnormalities are found then you should be fine.  The pills can be stopped if they problems do arise.  

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  • Posted

    yea, it's crazy. they put you on a pill for one thing, then they put you on another pill for the side effects of the first one, then another one for the side effects of the second one...etc. they have me supplied with viagra to counter the effect that 4 of the meds destroy your libido, then they threaten to put you on antidepressents becuase you just don't care about the libido anymore. I sometimes think that the heart problem would have been better than all this.

     

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    • Posted

      Hiya!   At least you are keeping your sense of humour.  As you say, it really is crazy that you have to add more tablets to your regime to deal with side effects of the previous medication.  Confess I have given up on the blood pressure tablets for now as pressure seems to have settled down.  Original diagnosis after house move and giving up job - stress.  Then they ask you to do a 24 hour bp monitor - every time it bleeped I got stressed.  The last time I wore one it had gone beyond its recalibration date so didn't trust it anyway!  And of course, there is white coat syndrome.  I am sure I would feel much better without the bp tablets but now I have PMR! 
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    • Posted

      it's a pity that big phama just looks at the dollar signs and not the human cost. The regime that all of us are on certainly affects quality of life. and Doctors are the face of big pharma. Very few will buck the trend and do what's right instead of what is profitable or break from protocol.
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  • Posted

    Thankyou all for your replies :-) 

    Ironically, I have just looked at the pain killer prescribed for my torn ligaments, which is why i went to the Dr in the first place, and find that there is a stroke/heart attack risk with them, and that I should "ask my Dr if they are safe for those with high BP".  I think I will be better off without lol.  Re the Ramipril, Dr did say the rarest side effects were loss of libido ( not worried about that as I'm past caring anyway ) and alopecia! Now that would worry me, I don't have much going for me but my hair I quite like! :-)

    Take care all

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