Diovan (valsartan) is an oral drug indicated for treatment of hypertension and heart failure. It is also used to reduce cardiovascular mortality in stable patients with left ventricular failure or left ventricular dysfunction secondary to myocardial infarction. It increases the chance of living longer after a heart attack.
This medication is an angiotensin II receptor blocker that relaxes blood vessels to allow blood to flow more easily. Its mechanism of action is inhibiting the effects of angiotensin II like vasoconstriction and aldosterone secretion through selectively blocking angiotensin II to angiotensin I receptors binding in the vascular smooth muscle and adrenal gland.
Before starting to take Diovan, read the medication or prescription guide thoroughly. Follow the exact dosage and frequency recommended by your physician. The dose would depend on your medical condition, response to treatment, and for children, weight. Diovan medication is available in 40 mg, 80 mg, 160 mg, and 320 mg.
Take this tablet orally – on an empty stomach or with food. Take it regularly and as often as prescribed. If the prescribed strength is not available or the child cannot swallow the medication, you may ask your pharmacist to cut the tablet or mix it as a liquid suspension. Remember to shake the bottle well and accurately measure the suspension if using the liquid form.
It is recommended to take Diovan at the same time of the day, every day, to prevent missing a dose. In case of a missed dose, take Diovan immediately. However, if you’re close to your next dose, disregard the missed dose and resume on your regular schedule.
Some of the common Diovan side effects you may experience are:
Most patients experience very few to no side effects, and these side effects usually go away without medical intervention. However, suppose you experience serious adverse effects like chest pain, irregular heartbeat, fainting, muscle weakness, severe vomiting, and swelling, discontinue medication and consult your physician right away.
Do not take Diovan if you have a known allergy to valsartan or any inactive ingredients the tablet may have. Signs of an allergic reaction include red patches on the skin, itchiness, swelling of the face, and trouble breathing. Seek emergency attention if you start to develop an allergic reaction.
Talk to your doctor about any medical condition you have at present or if you have a medical history of liver disease, kidney disease, dehydration, or electrolyte imbalance. Some conditions may affect how you respond to Diovan.
Limit alcohol intake while taking this medication. This medication may make you dizzy, and alcohol intake can worsen these side effects. Also, practice extreme caution when doing activities requiring alertness, such as driving and using machinery.
Diovan may also increase your potassium levels. Before you take any supplement, especially that which contains potassium, consult your physician first.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is Diovan an effective medication?
Diovan reviews and clinical studies show that it is a safe and effective medication to treat hypertension and heart failure.
What is the difference – Diovan and Diovan HCT?
Diovan contains one active ingredient, which is valsartan, whereas Diovan HCT contains valsartan and hydrochlorothiazide.
Can Diovan be taken at night?
If you are taking Diovan once a day, your physician may recommend you take this medication at night as it causes dizziness.
Can pregnant women take Diovan?
Diovan belongs to Pregnancy Category D, which means that it could cause harm to a fetus or an unborn child.
Can breastfeeding women take Diovan?
There are still not enough studies to tell whether or not Diovan could pass into the breastmilk.