carvedilol



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Coreg, Coreg CR

What is carvedilol?

Carvedilol is in a group of drugs called beta-blockers. Beta-blockers affect the heart and circulation (blood flow through arteries and veins).

Carvedilol is used to treat heart failure and hypertension (high blood pressure). It is also used to treat or prevent heart attack.

Carvedilol may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about carvedilol?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to carvedilol, or if you have asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, severe liver disease, or a serious heart condition such as heart block, sick sinus syndrome, or slow heart rate (unless you have a pacemaker).

If you need to have any type of surgery, you may need to temporarily stop using carvedilol. Be sure the surgeon knows ahead of time that you are using carvedilol.

Do not stop taking carvedilol without first talking to your doctor. Stopping suddenly may make your condition worse.

Carvedilol can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

Avoid drinking alcohol within 2 hours before or after taking extended-release carvedilol (Coreg CR). Also avoid taking medicines or other products that might contain alcohol. Alcohol may cause the carvedilol in Coreg CR to be released too quickly into the body.

Carvedilol is only part of a complete program of treatment for hypertension that may also include diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very closely if you are being treated for hypertension.

Hypertension often has no symptoms, so you may not even feel that you have high blood pressure. Continue using this medicine as directed, even if you feel well. You may need to use blood pressure medication for the rest of your life.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking carvedilol?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to carvedilol, or if you have:

  • asthma, bronchitis, emphysema
  • severe liver disease; or
  • a serious heart condition such as heart block, sick sinus syndrome, or slow heart rate (unless you have a pacemaker).

Before taking carvedilol, tell your doctor if you have:

  • diabetes (taking carvedilol can make it harder for you to tell when you have low blood sugar)
  • low blood pressure
  • congestive heart failure
  • depression
  • kidney disease
  • a thyroid disorder
  • myasthenia gravis
  • pheochromocytoma; or
  • problems with circulation (such as Raynaud's syndrome).

If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take this medication.

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether carvedilol is harmful to an unborn baby. Before using this medication, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

It is not known whether carvedilol passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take carvedilol?

Take carvedilol exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts or for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

This medication comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

Take this medication with a full glass of water.

Take carvedilol at the same time every day. Do not skip doses or stop taking carvedilol without first talking to your doctor. Stopping suddenly may make your condition worse.

You may open the carvedilol extended-release capsule and sprinkle the medicine into a spoonful of applesauce to make swallowing easier. Swallow this mixture right away without chewing. Do not save the mixture for later use. Discard the empty capsule.

If you are switched from carvedilol tablets to carvedilol extended-release capsules (Coreg CR), your daily total dose of this medicine may be higher or lower than before. Older adults may be more likely to become dizzy or feel faint when switching from tablets to extended-release capsules. Follow your doctor's instructions.

To be sure this medication is helping your condition, your blood pressure will need to be checked on a regular basis. It is important that you not miss any scheduled visits to your doctor.

If you need to have any type of surgery, tell the surgeon that you are using carvedilol. You may need to briefly stop using carvedilol before having surgery.

Carvedilol is only part of a complete program of treatment for hypertension that may also include diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very closely if you are being treated for hypertension.

Hypertension often has no symptoms, so you may not even feel that you have high blood pressure. Continue using this medicine as directed, even if you feel well. You may need to use blood pressure medication for the rest of your life.

Store carvedilol at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If your next dose is less than 4 hours away, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Overdose symptoms may include uneven heartbeats, shortness of breath, bluish-colored fingernails, dizziness, weakness, fainting, and seizure (convulsions).

What should I avoid while taking carvedilol?

Carvedilol can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

Avoid drinking alcohol within 2 hours before or after taking extended-release carvedilol (Coreg CR). Also avoid taking medicines or other products that might contain alcohol. Alcohol may cause the carvedilol in Coreg CR to be released too quickly into the body. Check the labels of any prescription or over-the-counter medicines you take to see if they contain alcohol (also called ethanol).

Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.

What are the possible side effects of carvedilol?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • slow or uneven heartbeats
  • feeling light-headed, fainting
  • feeling short of breath, even with mild exertion
  • swelling of your ankles or feet
  • nausea, stomach pain, low fever, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
  • depression; or
  • cold feeling in your hands and feet.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • decreased sex drive, impotence, or difficulty having an orgasm;
  • sleep problems (insomnia)
  • tired feeling; or
  • anxiety, nervousness.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect carvedilol?

Before taking carvedilol, tell your doctor if you are using:

  • allergy treatments (or if you are undergoing allergy skin-testing)
  • clonidine (Catapres)
  • cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune)
  • digoxin (digitalis, Lanoxin)
  • fluconazole (Diflucan)
  • guanabenz (Wytensin)
  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate)
  • insulin or diabetes medication you take by mouth
  • an antidepressant such as fluoxetine (Prozac) or paroxetine (Paxil)
  • a beta blocker such as atenolol (Tenormin), esmolol (Brevibloc), labetalol (Normodyne, Trandate), metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol), nadolol (Corgard), propranolol (Inderal, InnoPran), sotalol (Betapace), and others
  • an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate), phenelzine (Nardil), or selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam)
  • a heart medication such as amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone), quinidine (Quinidex, Quinaglute, Quin-Release), propafenone (Rythmol), nifedipine (Procardia, Adalat), reserpine (Serpasil), verapamil (Calan, Verelan, Isoptin), diltiazem (Cartia, Cardizem)
  • medicine for asthma or other breathing disorders, such as albuterol (Ventolin, Proventil), bitolterol (Tornalate), metaproterenol (Alupent), pirbuterol (Maxair), terbutaline (Brethaire, Brethine, Bricanyl), and theophylline (Theo-Dur, Theolair); or
  • cold medicines, stimulant medicines, or diet pills.

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs not listed that can affect carvedilol. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about carvedilol.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the condition prescribed.

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.