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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Hypertension

Question: Lisinopril - seems like bad reaction to it

 land234 - Wed Jan 14, 2009 4:18 pm

I have been on the drug for 2 months, right now I feel horrible, so bad i stopped taking it.

1st month on it, no side effects really.

2nd month, started feeling nauseas, then my heart started palpating, so my doctor put me on atenolol, which i couldnt sleep while taking so I stopped after a week. that was last week, now I am sooooo dizzy and light headed. its Wednesday night, the last lisinopril pill i took was Tuesday morning...I feel like I'm going to die! my heart still pounds accosianlly, my hands sweat, some chest pain, "heavy" legs, anxiety (probably due to worring about all these symptoms). I had an ekg thingy done last week and blood work, nothing unusual came up.

I was also on Niacin for a while in there for cholesterol, but the flashes were so terrable I threw up.

I'm 6'2" male about 190 and a little scared by all this. I'm going to the doc on Friday...just hope I survive till then. my bp was 145ish/80ish
 John Kenyon, CNA - Thu Jan 15, 2009 10:41 pm

User avatar Hello -

Lisinopril was causing you no side effects for a month, then you began having nausea and palpitations. OK, while both of these are occasional side effects of the drug, it's unusual to develop side effects from most drugs after a month, during which they've usually come and gone (if they're going to go). This doesn't mean it couldn't have been the lisinopril, but makes it less likely. By the same toke those symptoms are both fairly common in the general population: you could have had a GI bug or eaten something that disagreed with you.

Atenolol, along with lisinopril, probably would affect a lot of people in an unpleasant way, so that's not surprising. Beta blockers sometimes cause sleep disturbances, so that makes sense. It also should have increased the antihypertensive effect of the lisinopril, which could have made you quite lightheaded and lethargic.

You took the last lisinopril yesterday. I don't know when you stopped the atenolol, but you were only on that for a week. Your blood pressure, after having stopped both antihypertensives, is only about 145/80. While the upper number (systolic) is higher than we'd like to see it, it's not at a critical level, and the diastolic (lower number) is fine. I'm wondering if you really needed to be treated for high blood pressure to begin with. If your BP wasn't that high to start with, you could have had some untoward effects. We don't know what dose of lisinopril you were on, either, but in a day or two it will have completely cleared your system. You may well be feeling anxious about the symptoms and that alone could be driving your blood pressure. From the tone of your post you sound like a somewhat anxious person to begin with. Discontinuing both drugs would have a certain amount of perceived unpleasant effect, but it shouldn't last long.

If your blood pressure was treatment-worthy before you started lisinopril, it would help to know what the average pressure was and what dose of lisinopril you were on. You may or may not need treatment for elevated BP. You may benefit more from an antianxiety medication.

If you can fill us in with some additional facts to clarify what the situation was previously, we might be able to point you in the appropriate direction. As it is right now you sound agitated, but we still don't know enough to suggest anything other than to bring all this back to your doctor's attention. Please try and recall what led to your being prescribed the lisinopril to begin with and what the dosage was. That would be a great starting point. Thanks, and we'll look forward to more information from you.
 land234 - Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:42 pm

Thank you for the reply!

I am beginning to agree that it may not have been the licenopril...

my bp, at its highest, was somewhere around 155/90, but I am a very anxious person (as you can tell from the previous note) and my doctor has asked for me to try and take Lexipro (which i have been on before and it helped...but I went off it cause I'm just not a fan of taking drugs). I plan to go on it but still have symptoms and I would like to clear this up before I go down the Lexipro path. I was calm one day last week, felt good, and took my bp at a pharmacy (after walking a 1/4 mile to get there...not sure if that affects it)and it was somewhere around 135/80. I was originally perscribed Licenopril (10 mg 1 time a day) cause it was consistantly high at the doc's office...140's/90's.

This may apply to another forum, but since I started here not sure if I should repost in the ear nose and throat section...

currently what is driving me crazy is:
Dizzy/ light headed for almost 4 weeks now (its all the time).
Tennitis pretty bad
a little lethargic
my eye twitches a lot...

symptoms that I no longer have:
heart palps have pretty much gone
I'm not as freaked out as I was...
not sweating like I was,
no heavy legs not chest pain

I did have, and at the time of the original post didnt catch the corrilation, about 5 weeks ago a NASTY sinus thing going on...lots of mucus that kinda backed up into my head. As soon as that cleared (about a week) is when my vertigo started then tennitis.

Thank you very much for the responce!...
 John Kenyon, CNA - Fri Feb 06, 2009 12:45 pm

User avatar Overall this is a very positive report! It's very important that you're able to recognize and work on your anxiety issues. The blood pressure seems to be stabilizing somewhat, also. A walk can raise the pressure slightly, or sometimes it can reduce it (if the walk was especially relaxing). It's hard to say which would be the case, but the fact that the pressure was near normal is certainly encouraging.

If Lexipro worked for you before, you may as well add that into your regimine for the time being. Remember, you're not married to the medication, but sometimes, if it's effective, it can buy you some quiet time to re-order your thinking and responses to stressors. Just feeling relaxed and normal is often worth the bother of taking a pill once or twice a day.

The dizziness and tinnitus are probably related, and may well be related to the sinus infection. There could be some residual congestion somewhere near the eustachian tube on one side. A good way to find out if this is the case is to try over-the-counter meclizine, either as the generic or one of the brand-names, such as Bonine or Dramamine Non-drowsy Formula. It won't correct the tinnitus, but if it helps with the dizziness it will help narrow down the cause of both.

Eye twitching is a very common, random complaint, but it is seen more often in anxious people. It tends to resolve on its own, but of course is crazy-making while it's going on. Try to be patient with that and it should go away shortly. It sounds as though you're making excellent progress. Keep up the good work!
 land234 - Wed Feb 11, 2009 1:21 pm

I have tried the over the counter dramamine, it didnt really do much. the dizzyness is very all consuming in my life right now. I had to take the day off work yesterday. I havnt fallen down or anything, but any kind of exorcise makes it worse. A couple weekends ago i did a three mile walk (around the mall in DC) and it made me feel awful (dizzy and weak/lathargic)

currently I am still dizzy and lathergic. Monday night I went to bed at 730 and slept through. The dizzyness is just wearing me out!

Is this something that goes away with time? I have an appointment with an ENT doc next week, if I'm still dizzy by then it will have been 7 weeks of dizzyness.

oh yea, I have a lot of ringing in my ears too...

Is there anything I should tell my ENT doc next week...? I guess just a written out solid history report.


oh, I also posted in the wrong thread about being on Amoxicillan for two weeks to hopefully correct an infection I had. didnt really do much.

 mlcoach1 - Fri May 01, 2009 2:04 pm


I too have been having problems with dizziness since September of last year.

I am football coach, and just before the start of the season I began to experience lightheadedness. I went to the doctor and my bp was very high 190/90. My doctor put me on lisinopril

Unfortunately the lightheadedness did not subside so I went back to see him about 4 to 5 weeks later. My blood pressure had gone down to 145/80, but he said that he would like to see it lower. He uped my dosage of lisinopril. (Wish i had the exact dosage with me). The dizziness did not improve, and for about the next 3 or so months I experimented with how much to take (bad idea I know). I got to a point where taking 1 pill a day instead of two was the best option, but still the lightheadedness did not go away completely.

Just last week I went back to my doctor because I have basically been living with some lightheadedness since Sept. This time he put me on Athenol along with the lisinopril. I was in his office for about 5 minutes! A bit frustrating because he seemed to not really take my problem that serious. He told me to come back in 6 weeks for a check up. The combination of meds put me back to fairly severe lightheadedness.

I feel best in the morning and evenings, and the most severe symptoms are during the day. I can function through it. In fact I played basketball a few days ago, but was very frustrated because I played teriible. Understandable considering my symptoms. It is things like this that frustrate me, because I cannot do the athletic things I used to.

I am a former offensive lineman and I am very overweight. I am 6'3 300lbs, but i am very athletic. I have been working on my weight ever since i stopped playing the game.

I don't seem to have symptoms while I am coaching. I guess I just get focused and don't notice them. My father, sister are very anxious people and worry all the time, but I do not consider myself to be this way.

It seems that when I take a high dose of lisinipril the symptoms are worse. I have even gone of the meds and pretty good for awhile, but the lightheadeness always returns.

I am very frustrated and any info you can give would be great.


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