Doctors diagnose heart failure by taking a medical history and conducting a physical exam and tests.
During the medical history your doctor will want to know if:
You have any other health problems such as diabetes, kidney disease, angina (chest pain), high blood pressure, or other heart problems
You drink alcohol, and if so, how much
You are taking medications.
During the physical, the doctor will check your blood pressure, use a stethoscope to hear sounds associated with...
Calcium channel blockers should be taken with food or milk. Follow the medication label directions. The number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and how long you need to take it will depend on the type of medication prescribed and on your condition.
What Side Effects Could I Have From Calcium Channel Blockers?
Side effects of calcium channel blockers include:
Contact your doctor if these side effects are persistent or severe.
If you have any of the following side effects, contact your doctor right away.
Should I Avoid Certain Food or Drugs While Taking Calcium Channel Blockers?
When taking calcium channel blockers:
Ask your doctor if you need to avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice while taking your calcium channel blocker.
Alcohol may interfere with the effects of calcium channel blockers and increase the side effects.
It is important that your doctor is aware of all the medications you are taking, as some may have the potential to interact with calcium channel blockers. Talk to your doctor before taking any new drug, including over-the-counter drugs, herbs, and supplements.
Other Guidelines for Taking Calcium Channel Blockers
While taking calcium channel blockers, have your blood pressure checked regularly, as advised by your doctor.
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory so that your response to the drug can be monitored.
While taking this medication, your doctor may tell you to take and record your pulse daily. Your provider will tell you how rapid your pulse should be. If your pulse is slower than advised, contact your doctor about taking your calcium channel blocker that day.