How much to take
Your doctor will tell you how many tablets to take each day. Usually patients start with one 150 mg tablet once a day. However, some patients may need a lower starting dose. Your doctor will tell you if this is necessary. The full blood pressure lowering effect of Karvea should be reached about 4-6 weeks after starting treatment.
Depending on how your blood pressure responds, your daily dose of Karvea may need to be increased. Most patients take either 150 mg or 300 mg each day.
In patients with high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, 300 mg once daily is the preferred maintenance dose for slowing the progression of associated kidney disease.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure of the correct dose for you.
They will tell you exactly how much to take.
Follow the instructions they give you.
How to take it
Swallow the tablet whole with a glass of water.
It does not matter whether you take Karvea tablets before or after food.
When to take it
Take Karvea at about the same time each day.
Taking your tablets at the same time each day will have the best effect. It will also help you remember when to take the tablets.
How long to take it
Continue taking Karvea until your doctor tells you to stop.
Karvea helps to control your high blood pressure, but it does not cure it. Therefore Karvea must be taken every day.
To help you remember to take your tablets each day, Karvea tablets are supplied in a Calendar pack with the foil backing marked with the days of the week. This is just a way to help you to remember to take your tablets. All of the tablets in the pack are the same.
When you start a new strip of tablets, take the tablet marked "START" at the end of the blister strip. On the next day, take the tablet marked with the relevant day of the week.
Continue taking your tablets each day until all of the tablets are taken. Commence the next strip at "START" and continue as before.
If you forget to take it
If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the dose you missed and take your next dose when you are meant to. Otherwise, take it as soon as you remember, and go back to taking your tablets as you would normally.
Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose you missed.
This may increase the chance of you getting any unwanted side effects.
If you are not sure what to do, ask
your doctor or pharmacist. If you have trouble remembering to take your tablets, ask your pharmacist for some hints.
If you take too much (overdose)
Immediately telephone your doctor or Poisons Information Centre (telephone: 13 11 26) or go to Accident and Emergency at your nearest hospital, if you think that you or anyone else may have taken too much Karvea. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning.
You may need urgent medical attention.
If you take too many Karvea tablets you will probably feel light-headed or dizzy.
Things you must do
Tell any other doctors, dentists, and pharmacists who are treating you that you are taking Karvea.
If you become pregnant while taking Karvea tell your doctor immediately.
Have your blood pressure checked when your doctor tells you to, to make sure Karvea is working.
If you are about to be started on any new medicine, tell your doctor and pharmacist that you are taking Karvea.
If you plan to have surgery that needs a general anaesthetic, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking Karvea.
Your blood pressure may drop suddenly.
Make sure you drink enough water during exercise and hot weather when you are taking Karvea, especially if you sweat a lot.
If you do not drink enough water while taking Karvea, you may faint or feel light-headed or sick. This is because your body does not have enough fluid and your blood pressure is low. If you continue to feel unwell, tell your doctor.
If you have excessive vomiting and/ or diarrhoea while taking Karvea, tell your doctor.
You may lose too much water and salt and your blood pressure may drop too much.
If you feel light headed or dizzy after taking your first dose of Karvea, or when your dose is increased, tell your doctor immediately.
Things you must not do
Do not give Karvea tablets to anyone else, even if they have the same condition as you.
Do not take Karvea to treat any other complaints unless your doctor or pharmacist tells you to.
Do not stop taking Karvea, or lower the dosage, without checking with your doctor.
Things to be careful of
If you feel light-headed, dizzy or faint when getting out of bed or standing up, get up slowly.
Standing up slowly, especially when you get up from bed or chairs, will help your body get used to the change in position and blood pressure. If this problem continues or gets worse, talk to your doctor.
Be careful driving or operating machinery until you know how Karvea affects you.
As with many other medicines used to treat high blood pressure, Karvea may cause dizziness or lightheadedness in some people.
If this occurs do not drive.
Make sure you know how you react to Karvea before you drive a car, operate machinery or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are dizzy or light-headed.
If you drink alcohol, dizziness or light-headedness may be worse.
Things that would be helpful for lowering your blood pressure
Some self help measures suggested below may help your condition. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about these measures and for more information.
- Alcohol -
your doctor may advise you to limit your alcohol intake.
- Weight -
if you are overweight, your doctor may suggest losing some weight to help lower your blood pressure and help lessen the amount of work your heart has to do. Some people may need a dietician's help to lose weight.
- Diet -
your doctor may advise you to eat a healthy low-fat diet which includes plenty of fresh vegetables, fruit, bread, cereals and fish.
- Salt -
your doctor may advise you to watch the amount of salt in your diet. To reduce your salt intake you should avoid using salt in cooking or at the table.
- Exercise -
regular exercise helps to reduce blood pressure and helps get the heart fitter, but it is important not to overdo it. Walking is good exercise, but try to find a route that is reasonably flat. Before starting any exercise, ask your doctor about the best kind of programme for you.
- Smoking -
your doctor may advise you to stop smoking or at least cut down.