Doxazosin is a medication that is commonly prescribed as a monotherapy or in combination with other drugs for the treatment of hypertension, a medical condition characterized by high blood pressure. By reducing high blood pressure, doxazosin helps to mitigate the risk of strokes, heart attacks, and kidney complications. This medication functions by inducing the relaxation of blood vessels, thereby allowing for more efficient blood flow.
Doxazosin is also indicated for the management of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) symptoms in men. Although it does not reduce the size of the prostate, it operates by relaxing the muscles in the prostate and a section of the bladder, resulting in relief from BPH symptoms like weak stream, difficulty initiating urine flow, and frequent or urgent urination. Doxazosin belongs to the class of drugs known as alpha blockers.
Uses and Dosage
This medication should be taken orally, with or without food, as directed by your physician, usually once per day.
Doxazosin may cause a sudden reduction in blood pressure, resulting in dizziness or fainting, usually occurring within 2 to 6 hours after ingestion. The risk of experiencing such symptoms is elevated when initiating treatment, increasing your dose, or resuming therapy following a period of discontinuation. During these critical periods, avoid activities where fainting could cause injury.
To minimize the risk of harm caused by dizziness or fainting, unless instructed otherwise by your physician, take the initial dose of doxazosin at bedtime. Your physician will initiate therapy at a low dose and gradually escalate the dose as needed. Anytime the dosage is elevated or treatment is resumed following discontinuation, take the first dose at bedtime, unless instructed otherwise.
The dosage of this medication is contingent upon your medical condition and reaction to treatment. Consistent usage of this medication is critical to maximizing its efficacy. To help you remember, take it at the same time every day.
If you miss taking doxazosin for several days, you may need to begin therapy again with a low dose, gradually increasing the dose thereafter. Please consult with your physician for further information.
Continue taking this medication even if you feel well, as most individuals with high blood pressure do not exhibit symptoms.
You will likely experience the benefits of this drug within 1 to 2 weeks of initiating therapy. If your condition fails to improve or worsens, such as high or increased blood pressure readings or aggravated BPH symptoms, please notify your physician.
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention:
- lack or loss of strength
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- acid or sour stomach
- back pain
- bladder pain
- cloudy urine
- difficulty in moving
- frequent urge to urinate
- joint pain
- lower back or side pain
- muscle aching, cramping, or weakness
- muscle pains or stiffness
- nervousness, restlessness, unusual irritability
- runny nose
- sleepiness or drowsiness
- sore throat
- stomach discomfort, upset or pain
- swollen joints
Inform your healthcare provider immediately if you experience any serious side effects:
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- blurred vision
- dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position
- fainting (sudden)
- fast and pounding heartbeat
- irregular heartbeat
- shortness of breath
- swelling of feet or lower legs
Prior to taking doxazosin, inform your physician or pharmacist if you have any allergies to this medication, other alpha blockers such as prazosin or terazosin, or any other substances. This medication may contain inactive components that can cause allergic reactions or other complications.
Prior to using this medication, inform your physician or pharmacist of your medical history, particularly if you have heart disease (such as congestive heart failure, angina, or a heart attack in the last 6 months), liver disease, or certain eye conditions (cataracts or glaucoma).
This medication may induce dizziness or drowsiness. Consumption of alcohol or marijuana may amplify these effects. Until you are certain that you can perform activities safely, such as driving or operating machinery, avoid these activities.
Older adults may be more prone to the side effects of this medication, especially dizziness and low blood pressure when rising from a seated or lying position. These side effects can raise the risk of falling.
During pregnancy, employ this medication only if it is absolutely necessary. Discuss the potential hazards and benefits with your doctor.
This medication is excreted in breast milk. Before breastfeeding, speak with your doctor for guidance.
Form and Strength
Cardura is available in the following forms and strengths:
Is Cardura a beta blocker?
No. Cardura is an alpha blocker.
How long does it take for Cardura to work?
It may take up to 2 weeks before your symptoms improve.