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What are the side effects of amlodipine besylate?

Updated February 21, 2019

Amlodipine besylate is a prescription medication used to treat heart conditions such as high blood pressure and angina. It is a calcium channel blocker that works by dilating blood vessels to help blood flow better. Amlodipine besylate is taken orally in pill form, usually once a day. The prescribing doctor may gradually increase the dosage based on the patient's condition and how well he is responding to treatment. Amlodipine besylate is also available under the brand name Norvasc.

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Serious Side Effects

In rare cases, people taking amlodipine besylate have experienced side effects that are a sign of a potential problem. Notify your doctor immediately if you notice any of the following: vision changes, fainting, a fast or irregular heartbeat or a pounding feeling in the chest.


About 7 per cent of people taking amlodipine besylate in a clinical trial developed headaches as a result of taking the medication. In most cases, the headaches are not severe and can be treated with over-the-counter painkillers.


In a clinical trial, about 8 per cent of people taking amlodipine besylate experienced swelling in the feet and ankles as a side effect. Swelling is not usually a bothersome side effect for people taking amlodipine besylate or other drugs, but report it to your doctor if it becomes troublesome.


Some people taking amlodipine besylate may experience mild tiredness or fatigue as a result of taking the medicine. This side effect was reported by about 4.5 per cent of people in a clinical trial. Because it can cause fatigue, users should be careful when first taking amlodipine besylate until they know if fatigue from the medicine will make it difficult for them to perform certain tasks.


Dizziness is sometimes experienced as a side effect of amlodipine besylate. In a clinical trial, about 3 per cent of people reported feeling dizzy as a side effect of the drug, which was about the same number of people taking the placebo who reported dizziness. Use caution when starting to take amlodipine besylate until you know how it will affect you. Dizziness could make it difficult to drive a vehicle or perform other tasks.

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About the Author

Anna Aronson

Anna Aronson began working as a journalist in 2000 and spent six years at suburban Chicago newspapers before pursuing freelance work. She enjoys writing about health care topics, in particular obstetrics, pediatrics and nutrition. She received a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Eastern Illinois University and is now studying for a Master of Science in medicine degree to become a physician's assistant.

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