Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Do not take candesartan if you are pregnant. If you become pregnant while you are taking candesartan, stop taking candesartan and call your doctor immediately. Candesartan may cause death or serious injury to the fetus when taken in the last 6 months of pregnancy.
Candesartan is used alone or in combination with other medications to treat high blood pressure. Candesartan is also used alone or in combination with other medications to treat congestive heart failure (a condition when your heart can not pump enough blood to the other parts of the body). Candesartan is in a class of medications called angiotensin II receptor antagonists. It works by blocking the action of certain natural substances that tighten the blood vessels, allowing the blood to flow more smoothly and the heart to pump more efficiently.
High blood pressure is a common condition, and when not treated it can cause damage to the brain, heart, blood vessels, kidneys, and other parts of the body. Damage to these organs may cause heart disease, a heart attack, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, loss of vision, and other problems. In addition to taking medication, making lifestyle changes will also help to control your blood pressure. These changes include eating a diet that is low in fat and salt, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising at least 30 minutes most days, not smoking, and using alcohol in moderation.
Candesartan comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once or twice a day with or without food. To help you remember to take candesartan, take it at around the same time(s) every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take candesartan exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Your doctor will probably start you on a low dose of candesartan and gradually increase your dose not more than once every 2 weeks.
Candesartan controls high blood pressure but does not cure it. Your blood pressure may decrease during the first 2 weeks of your treatment, but it may take 4 to 6 weeks for you to notice the full benefit of candesartan. Continue to take candesartan even if you feel well. Do not stop taking candesartan without talking to your doctor.
Candesartan is also sometimes used to treat diabetic nephropathy (kidney disease in people with diabetes and high blood pressure). Talk to your doctor about the risks of using this medication for your condition.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Before taking candesartan,
Do not use salt substitutes containing potassium without talking to your doctor. If your doctor prescribes a low-salt or low-sodium diet, follow these directions carefully.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Candesartan may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms or those listed in the SPECIAL PRECAUTIONS section, call your doctor immediately:
Candesartan may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online ( Web Site) or by phone (1-800-332-1088).
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom).
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA's Safe Disposal of Medicines website ( Web Site) for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers (such as weekly pill minders and those for eye drops, creams, patches, and inhalers) are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location – one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach. Web Site
In case of overdose, call the poison control helpline at 1-800-222-1222. Information is also available online at Web Site. If the victim has collapsed, had a seizure, has trouble breathing, or can't be awakened, immediately call emergency services at 911.
Symptoms of overdose may include the following:
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your blood pressure should be checked regularly to determine your response to candesartan.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.