Losartan

Losartan

Losartan is a prescription medication used for the treatment of conditions to do with blood pressure. This medication is available as an oral tablet and may also come with the brand name Cozaar on the label. More information

A doctor will review your order and write you a prescription, if appropriate. This prescription is then forwarded to a pharmacy. The pharmacy will have your medicine delivered to you within one to three working days. Read more about this process here.

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Losartan is a kind of angiotensin II receptor drug. These kinds of medications bind to the receptors in your blood vessels, reducing blood pressure. Losartan is only available on prescription.  

What is Losartan? 

Losartan is a prescription medication used for the treatment of conditions to do with blood pressure. This medication is available as an oral tablet and may also come with the brand name Cozaar on the label.  

Losartan is used both as a standalone treatment in certain cases, and as a combination therapy. This means that it can be used with other drugs to deliver a better outcome when a patient is suffering from a complicated condition.  

Losartan works by blocking the action of a certain chemical in the human body called angiotensin II. This is a chemical that causes blood vessels to narrow and tighten. Used correctly, Losartan can help to relax and widen the blood vessels, reducing blood pressure as a result.  

Although high blood pressure doesn’t always cause symptoms, it does put the people who have it at risk of other serious issues, such as kidney damage and stroke. Because of this, doctors and medical professionals that recognize the symptoms of higher blood pressure in a patient will try to get them on a consistent treatment straight away.  

Your medication may also be combined with certain changes to your lifestyle. Sometimes changing the foods that you eat can also help you to overcome high blood pressure.  

When is Losartan used? 

Losartan is used for the treatment of high blood pressure, otherwise known as hypertension. This medication can help to protect your kidneys and other parts of your body from damage. In some cases, doctors may prescribe Losartan to protect your kidneys from issues caused by diabetes too.  

In certain circumstances, your doctor will ask you to take Losartan if you have a higher than usual risk of a stroke because of an enlarged heart. Additionally, Losartan can simply be used to reduce the potential side effects of high blood pressure in patients that are working on improving their health.  

Losartan is available only on prescription and may be given as part of a combination treatment that involves taking other medications, as well as changing parts of your lifestyle.  

How do you use Losartan? 

It is important to read the patient leaflet that comes with any medication that you use, including Losartan. Read the leaflet when you are given your medication, as well as every time you get a refill, as findings and scientific study can change the instructions given to people getting a specific treatment.  

If you have any questions about what you read in your patient leaflets, speak to a doctor or a pharmacist about your concerns.  

Losartan in tablet form is taken by mouth according to the daily dosage instructions of your doctor or medical consultant. You can take this medication either with or without food. Some patients find that taking medications with food helps to settle their stomach and reduce nausea.  

If you are using the liquid version of Losartan, you will need to shake the bottle thoroughly before taking your dose. Measure the amount of medication that you need to take carefully, using the measuring device provided for you.  

Your doctor will often advise you to take this medication regularly to get the most benefit out of it. To help you remember, you should take the drug at the same time each day, as this will help to maintain a consistent amount in your system.  

Tell your doctor if after a while of using Losartan, you don’t notice any improvement to your symptoms.  

What dosages are there? 

Your doctor will provide a dose of Losartan based on your medical history and current condition. If you are taking the tablet version of this medication, you will usually be asked to take the pill once a day with a glass of water. If you miss a dose, you should be safe to take the medication when you remember, unless it is too close to the time for your next dose.  

Usually, you will need to continue taking Losartan for an extended period of time to see the benefit from it. You should continue to take this medication for as long as your doctor or consultant tells you to do so. Do not stop taking Losartan if you don’t have any symptoms. High blood pressure will not always cause symptoms. 

Ensure that you follow the instructions given by your doctor carefully on how to take this medication. If you are taking Losartan for an extended period of time, your doctor may prefer to ween you off it instead of stopping the medication entirely.  

What are the side effects of Losartan? 

All medications can sometimes cause side effects. Being aware of the side effects that may occur when you take a medication can put your mind at ease. It may also inform you of when you need to seek help from an emergency care team or a medical professional. The common side effects of Losartan will often go away by themselves when your body has adjusted to the medication.  

For instance, the most common side effects of Losartan are dizziness or lightheadedness. These issues are likely to pass after a little while of using this drug regularly. However, you can reduce your risk of felling dizzy by making sure that you get up slowly after sitting or lying down.  

Remember, your doctor or consultant will have given you this medication because the benefit to you is deemed greater than any potential risk. However, you should seek help if any serious side effects occur, including: 

  • Symptoms of high potassium, including muscle weakness and an irregular or slow heartbeat or fainting; 
  • Increased kidney problems such as a change in your amount of urine, pain in your kidney, or difficulty passing urine.  

If you are at high risk of suffering from a kidney problem when taking Losartan, your doctor might ask to take regular kidney functioning tests to ensure that everything is normal.  

A very severe allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, however, you should seek medical attention whenever you suspect that you might be having a serious allergic reactions. Allergic reactions can cause symptoms that include sever dizziness, problems with your breathing, swelling in the throat or tongue, and problems with itching across your body.  

This is not a complete list of the side effects that may occur when you’re taking Losartan. If you notice any other side effects that have not been listed here, seek advice from a doctor or medical professional to determine if you should continue using Losartan. 

When shouldn’t you use Losartan? 

Losartan is a suitable treatment for many people with high blood pressure, however, it may not be the right choice in every situation. Before you begin taking this medication, it’s important to tell your doctor or consultant about your medical history and answer any questions they might have.  

Do not take Losartan if you are allergic to this medication or any of the ingredients in it. Your doctor should be aware of any allergies that you have, as this drug can contain inactive ingredients that cause allergic responses too.  

Before you begin this medication, make sure that your doctor or consultant is aware of your medical history, particularly if that includes any issues with liver disease, renal disease or severe dehydration.  

This drug can make you feel dizzy at times, this is particularly common in older people. Make sure that you are careful moving around if you feel dizziness when you are using Losartan. Additionally, remember that Losartan can increase your potassium levels in some cases. If you are using supplements for potassium, as your doctor or consultant if you should continue before using Losartan  

Losartan is not recommended for use during pregnancy as it is possible that it could cause harm to an unborn baby. If you need to take treatment for high blood pressure when you are pregnant, speak to your doctor or consultant about safer options.  

It isn’t certain at this time if Losartan passes into breastmilk, if you are breast feeding, ask your doctor or consultant about your options before taking Losartan. 

Does Losartan interact with other medications? 

Losartan and other substances may interact negatively at times, increasing your chances of dangerous side effects. Drug interactions could also mean that the medications that you need to take are processed by your body differently, so they can’t work as well.  

To ensure that it is safe for you to take Losartan, make sure that you provide your doctor or consultant with a full list of the medicines that you are taking. This should include all prescription drugs, and non-prescription or over the counter medications. You should also inform your doctor or consultant of any herbal remedies you are using.  

Some of the products that interact with Losartan include other medications that increase the level of potassium in your blood.  

Some other products may include ingredients that raise your blood pressure or make your condition worse. Tell your doctor about these medications before you begin treatment with Losartan.  

Where can you buy Losartan? 

Losartan is available to purchase from reputable pharmacies both online and offline. You will need to speak to a medical consultant or doctor before getting this medication.  

Can I get Losartan without a prescription? 

Losartan is a prescription only medication. Speaking to a medical professional about your condition will ensure you’re getting the right treatment.  

Sources 

Drugs.com (2020, April, 10 ) Losartan Retrieved April 11th 2020 from: https://www.drugs.com/losartan.html 

Medicines.org (2015, Jun 01 ) Losartan Potassium 50 mg Film-coated Tablets Retrieved April 11th 2020 from: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/5961/smpc 

NHS.com (2018, December 13) Losartan Retrieved April 11th 2020 from: https://www.nhs.uk/medicines/losartan/ 

Assessed by:

Dr Imran Malik, General practitioner
Registration number: GMC: 4741365

Dr Imran Malik studied undergraduate medicine at King's College University in Central London and clinical studies at the prestigious King's College Hospital. He graduated with a MBBS degree in 2000 and went on to gain postgraduate memberships with the Royal Society of Medicine and also General Practice in 2006.