Reading this forum has helped me so much

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I am 68 and have had BP in region of 145/90 for many years without taking medication of any sort. Recently it was a little higher and  I was prescribed amlodipine 5mg and decided to try it. BP was lowered but side effects were awful: inflammation of stomach lining being the most concerning, fuzzy brain, swollen ankles, flushing, rashes. Reading this forum, after 6 weeks I stopped taking it with no withdrawal effects. My BP is back to (my) normal and I feel human again. I am lucky. I don't know what I would have done if it was reading any higher. The negatives offset the positives of amlodipine for me. Many thanks to all who contribute to this forum. It helped me immensely. Good luck with your own BP reduction. Gail

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17 Replies

  • Posted

    Hello Gail,

    I'm pleased that our collective comments regarding Amlodipine has been useful. When I was first prescribed it, it helped me no end too. I had similar symptoms as you did, persevered with it for 2 months and then headed back to my GP to see what else he could prescribe. I'm now on Adizem capsules 120mg twice a day and, although I still get ankle swelling it's not as painful as previously. I'm also on Perindopril 8mg on a morning and the combination of the two seems to be helping although he did warn me that, although my BP would Co. E down, the Adizem wouldn't be quite as effective, I can live with that though as my BP is well within normal limits and at least I don't have to live with all the awful side effects. Good luck with getting medication that works a bit better for you.

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  • Posted

    gail20548..I'm happy you're feeling better HOWEVER from what you've written, I will guess that you took yourself off the medication & did not consult with your Dr. 

    I would never ever encourage anyone to do that. It's equal to playing Russian Roulette., & a very high risk of rebound hbp. As for the inflammation of the stomach lining..was that confirmed by medical tests? 

    It's agreed that swollen ankles & flushing can/will occur, it depends on the individual. Swollen feet/ankles/lower legs are a very common side effect of Amlodipine but there are other meds out there. Keep a watchful eye on things.

    Good luck!!!

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    • Posted

      Thanks Mike. Re inflammation, I have not spoken to a medic but I did not have the pain before and it has now stopped. I will keep an eye on things in future.
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    • Posted

      mike, I should have mentioned that I did tell my GP briefly about the stomach problem but he dismissed my concerns saying that the drug is not usually associated with that. I guess it still isn't! Anyway I took matters into my own hands. I will keep an eye on things and if there is any reversal  I will tell the forum. Thanks.

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  • Posted

    The swollen feet/ankle seems to affect most people. It also started to colour and scar my shins, before I stopped taking it.
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  • Posted

    Hi Gail, I'm thankful as well. It took over ten years before I realized the Amlodipine was causing gastrointestinal issues. I stopped taking it and I feel so much better. 

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  • Posted

    Hello Gail,

    ​I have been suffering from bladder pain (interstitial cystitis) and bowel problems for the last eight years.  These issues coinside with my being prescribed amlodipine but I have never, until now connected them with this medication.  After readiing about your experience, perhaps it is something that I should consider as  I would dearly like to regain my health.  Thank you for your contribution.

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  • Posted

    Hi Gail just read your post could you tell me please the Symptoms of what you class as fuzzy brain . I ask because I wondered if it's the same thing that I've been experiencing. Sue 

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    • Posted

      Sue, I write as a hobby, working on a novel. I noticed my creativity just dried up and wondered if it was associated with the medicine. Someone else on this forum had made that comment and I put two and two together.   It's a guess only. I do feel better now. More like me. Sorry if this is vague but it is hard to describe.

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    • Posted

      Hi Sue and Gail

      This was the worst of all the side effects for me (of which there were many). I was on Amlodipine and Lisinopril for about 5 years and repeatedly told everything I was suffering was not due to the tablets. I believed them as the symptoms occurred slowly over time.

      I suffered memory loss, such as names, places, birthdays, appt's etc. Which included my husband's name at one point! I lost confidence and became quite anxious, I wouldn't drive because I felt my reactions/judgement  were impaired. I live quite rural so practically became a prisoner. Information couldn't be absorbed, such as having a telephone conversation and not really understanding what the person was saying to me. I dreaded having to sort out any kind of 'official' business such as forms or other paperwork, as I felt as though I couldn't understand what the questions were asking, I couldn't remember appointments and had to write everything down and check the calendar daily (if I remembered to, which often I didn't.......thank God for my husband). If anyone asked me what med's I was on, or if I'd tried a particular med, I literally couldn't tell them because I couldn't remember the name of it........I honestly thought I was starting with dimentia. I was 55 at the time.

      Normally I feel like I'm pretty on the ball and my husband says I'm 'sharp as a tack', but not whilst I was on these tablets. I came off them 18 months ago and went back to my old self in about a couple of months. I've felt really well ever since and no problems whatsoever with memory or mental clarity. But now the doctor wants me to go back on BP medication and have tried Felodipine so far and another one that I can't remember the name of, (see? I could feel the same symptoms creeping back within 2 months). I haven't renewed the prescription and I'm back there next week to discuss further. I'm hoping I can find something that works for me and doesn't turn me into a blubbering mess. The physical side effects were bad enough, but when they seriously impair my mental capacity I refuse to take them. It's not worth it for me personally.

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    • Posted

      I too went on to felodipine after amlodipine. Samething happened, a period of no problems and then they started to creep back again.
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    • Posted

      You just can't be sure what causes things. I felt I couldn't think straight. I do hope you get a good result. Gail.

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    • Posted

      Hi thanks to and all who have posted it really does help . I myself suffere more with what I can only describe as brain fog I've lost all interest in my hobbies sewing crocheting I just don't feel any enthusiasm to pick them up . I can't think straight like I'm in a world of my own like a zombie I'm just going through the motions of my everyday life almost like I'm running on auto pilot. I don't care about anything lost all interest in things that I used to enjoy . It's too much trouble to get out of bed tired no enthusiasm. Anxiety and depression . Snapping at my loved ones . Can't concentrate my memory is terrible . I was on Amlodopine for 3years and these symptoms crept up on me I told my Dr he dismissed them until I told him I wasn't going to take them any more so he relented and change them tom10 mg of Rampiril but the symptoms are still with me but I've since discovered they are virtually the same stuff . I believe they are calcium based . And I read that calcium can cause dementia. Now if that is true it would perhaps explain why the elderly get dementia as it's more elderly with high blood pressure I'm just wondering if there is a connection between the two . That's why I'm interested to hear of  others side effect symptoms especially with memory concentration etc . Sue

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    • Posted

      Hi Sue

      Yes, I had all that too. I basically stopped living. I love my garden, but on beautiful summer days, I sat inside doing absolutely nothing. I stopped painting, walking the dog, seeing people, laughing. In fact I can't remember what I did do for several years, it's a missing part of my life.

      The worst and wierdest part of it all was, I knew this was happening at the time........and didn't care. It's difficult to explain, but it's like you really don't care about anything, you know that isn't normal or right, but you don't even care that you don't care if you know what I mean.  I wasn't in a fit state to stand up to the doctors and fight my corner. All they seemed to care about was that the numbers suited them regarding my BP.

      It ended for me when my husband forced me into taking a holiday. I really didn't want to go, but the poor man had put up with enough. I forgot to take my med's with me and couldn't be bothered fussing about it so did without. At the end of two weeks I was a different person. It was like someone had drawn back the curtains and thrown the windows open! I continued to improve the longer I was off them. That's when the anger kicked in. Never again.

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    • Posted

      Hello Sue.

      First of all an apology for the length of this reply. I only took Amlodipine for a couple of months because of having initial side effects of oedematous legs which my GP had warned me about although I also had some oedema around my ankles previously. My major problem was 24hr nausea and light-headedness making me feel dizzy and as if I was walking through a fog most of the time. It has only been since reading the posts from contributors such as you that I've realised that my forgetfulness on occasion had become worse and that, at 61 years of age I began worrying about dementia. Having been a nurse I was very aware of the early signs of the disease, I also wondered if the Amlodipine had an adverse effect on some of the menopausal symptoms that I had suddenly started suffering from again after a gap of 6yrs without any issues. Certainly the Amlodipine brought on hot flushes and night sweats again as they are part and parcel of the side effects that some people suffer with. Even 2 months after my medication has been changed to Adizem 120mg twice a day I am still suffering from nausea, hot flushes and night sweats although my GP has said they will lessen a new time. The Adizem does seem to be less of a problem from the side effect point of view but, as my GP mentioned, it doesn't bring my BP down as much as the Amlodipine, so there appears to be an element of "trade off" between the two drugs. I don:t that no that some of the medication that I have been prescribed following a back injury whilst working as an A&E and Orthopaedic and Trauma Ward Sister help me have always helped as there is a mix of opiates, anti-inflammatories and neuropathic pain relief drugs such as Morphine Continus, Pregabalin and Amitryptiline amongst them causing possible interaction problems too. I'll see how I get on with taking the Calcium Channel Blockers that I've been prescribed alongside my Perindopril over the next month or two and keep you up to date with how things work out.

      Kathryn.

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