Medicines & Supplements A to Z > Valsartan
Last updated on 24/03/2021.
GENERIC NAME: Valsartan
CHINESE NAME: 纈沙坦
BRAND NAME(S) IN HONG KONG: APT-Valsartan, Co-Diovan (Contains Valsartan and Hydrochlorothiazide), Exforge 益可服
(Contains Valsartan and Amlodipine), Exforge HCT
DRUG CLASS: Angiotensin II receptor blocker; Antihypertensive
USED FOR: High blood pressure, heart attack, heart failure
OTHER DRUGS IN THE SAME CLASS: Azilsartan, Candesartan, Eprosartan, Irbesartan, Losartan, Olmesartan, Telmisartan
AVAILABLE DOSAGE FORMS: 40mg, 80mg, 160mg, 320mg (tablets)
What is Valsartan for?
Valsartan belongs to a class of medications called angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), just like Losartan. ARBs block the substances that constrict the blood vessels and hence more blood and oxygen can reach the heart.
Valsartan is therefore commonly used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure, to improve survival in patients with left ventricular dysfunction after a heart attack, especially when medications such as Lisinopril (angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor) cannot be used.
How to use it?
Valsartan can be taken by mouth as tablets. Suggested adult oral doses for different uses are listed below:
For high blood pressure
Start with 80 mg once a day, and increase to 160 mg once daily if necessary. The maximum daily dose is 320 mg once daily.
For improving survival after a heart attack
Start with 20 mg twice daily, and increase up to 160 mg twice daily if necessary.
For heart failure
Start with 40 mg twice daily, and increase up to 160 mg twice daily if necessary.
What are the side effects of Valsartan?
Common side effects of Valsartan include diarrhoea, dizziness, headache, high potassium levels, low blood pressure, and kidney impairment. If you have intravascular volume depletion, for example, those taking high-dose other blood pressure-lowering drugs, you may also experience postural hypotension, that is your blood pressure falls when you stand up from sitting or lying down.
Who should not take Valsartan?
– People allergic to Valsartan or any formulation ingredient
– Patients with diabetes who are taking Aliskiren at the same time.
– Inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately if you know you are pregnant while on this medication.
– Avoid alcohol while you are taking Valsartan to reduce dizziness.
– If you experience postural hypotension, get up slowly from lying or sitting positions or sit down until you feel better.
Common dosing schedule:
You can take Valsartan with or without food.
Take the first dose at bedtime to avoid dizziness. You can take it at any time of day afterwards. Take the drug at the same time every day.
This schedule is for reference only, adjustments may be made according to individual needs.
Some common medications Valsartan may interact with:
– Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor, e.g. Captopril, Ramipril
– Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, e.g. Ibuprofen, Naproxen
– Other angiotensin II receptor blockers, e.g. Azilsartan, Candesartan
– Potassium supplements
Please notify your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking the above medication, dosage adjustments might be needed.
Where to buy Valsartan in Hong Kong?
In Hong Kong, Valsartan is a prescription-only medicine, and requires a prescription from a doctor to be purchased in a pharmacy. It can also be obtained from doctors. To find a pharmacy near you, refer to the list of pharmacies (“Authorized Sellers of Poisons”) from the Hong Kong Department of Health.
For more information about drug names and ingredients, you can visit Hong Kong’s Drug Office at https://www.drugoffice.gov.hk
Need more information?
For detailed information about the use of Valsartan in children, pregnancy and breastfeeding, and for questions about drug interactions, please check with your pharmacist or doctor.
Disclaimer: our goal is to provide you with the most relevant drug information and common dosage for Hong Kong. This information does not constitute medical advice. For specific treatment recommendations and advice, always discuss with your doctor or pharmacist, and follow the instructions included with your specific medicine.