What is Ramipril? Facts on its uses, benefits and side effects

As part of our focus on cardiovascular disease, we’re taking a look at Ramipril. This commonly prescribed medicine is used to help treat several conditions, including high blood pressure (also known as hypertension). In this blog we’re going to take a closer look at Ramipril to understand what it does and how to take it.

What is Ramipril and how does it work?

Ramipril is prescribed to help treat high blood pressure, heart failure, and kidney disease, and is also often used after a heart attack. It belongs to a group of medicines known as ACE inhibitors (Angiotensin Converting Enzyme inhibitors) which work by preventing the body from producing a substance that narrows the blood vessels. By doing this, it reduces the risk of developing a more serious condition such as a stroke, heart disease, or kidney disease.

How do you take Ramipril, what is the recommended dosage?

The strength and dosage for Ramipril may change depending on the reason it’s being prescribed.

When taken for high blood pressure or to reduce the risk of a heart attack or stroke, the typical starting dose for adults is 2.5mg, to be taken once a day. Your doctor will adjust the amount you’re taking until your blood pressure is under control. The maximum daily dose is 10mg, and if you’re already taking diuretics (water tablets), then your doctor may stop or reduce their dosage before starting Ramipril; or alternatively they may give you a lower 1.25mg dose of Ramipril to start with.

Ramipril can also be used to manage patients with kidney disease, and the usual starting dose for this is 1.25mg, to be taken once daily. Working with your doctor, the amount of Ramipril you’re taking may be adjusted, up to 2.5mg daily and then 5mg daily.

When should I take Ramipril?

Ramipril can be taken before, during, or after meals – food does not affect how it works; but it’s best to take it at around the same time each day, and at a time that makes it less likely for you to forget.

What are the side effects of Ramipril?

Like all medicines, there is a chance you’ll experience side effects when taking Ramipril, but not everybody gets them.

Common side effects can include:

  • headaches
  • feeling tired or dizzy (which can happen when your Ramipril dosage is increased because of the lowering of your blood pressure)
  • a dry or tickly cough
  • fainting
  • stomach pain
  • chest pain or muscle pain

Common side effects may pass within a few days.

Contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of the serious side effects listed in the patient information leaflet inside the medicine pack. These include any swelling of the face, lips or throat which make it difficult to swallow or breathe, severe skin reactions, a faster heart beat, shortness of breath, unusual bruising or bleeding, or any general malaise that is persistent.

If you’re experiencing side effects, you can talk about them with your pharmacist for more advice and reassurance. You can also report them via the Yellow Card Scheme. This sends a report to the MHRA (the Government’s medicines safety department) which monitors medicines to ensure any safety concerns are collated and recorded.

Where can I get Ramipril?

At Pharmacy2U, our team of qualified UK-based pharmacists work with your GP, to get the medication you need delivered directly to you, for free. Every patient who uses Pharmacy2U means the NHS pays less in fees than they would an average high street pharmacy*. To find out more about how we can help you or your friends and family with long term health conditions, click here.

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Phil Day By Phil Day Superintendent Pharmacist Published: 20/02/2021