Heart & Vascular Program

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Medications are useful to control symptoms and to help prevent complications. There are several heart medications available to treat angina, hypertension, congestive heart failure and irregular heart rhythm. Your physician will work with you to help you choose the most appropriate medication for your individual case.

Many people are concerned about potential side effects from medications. Often, side effects are minimized by choosing the lowest effective dose and proper monitoring. A more informed patient has less risk of experiencing side effects, so ask questions and become a key player in your heart health.

Important Advice about Medication

  • Carefully read and follow the instructions on your prescription vial. Check with your doctor or pharmacist if the directions are unclear.
  • If you are going to see a doctor or going to the hospital, bring along a list of medications you are taking or the bottles of pills.
  • Make sure you have enough medication at all times. Suddenly stopping medication may cause your condition to worsen.
  • To avoid confusion, do not mix different medications in the same vial. You may, however use a pill box, which separates your pills into a weeks supply.
  • Keep your medications in a cool, dry place, out of the reach of children. Do not keep your medication in direct sunlight or in a damp place such as the bathroom or kitchen. Keep medication in the refrigerator only if the label indicates to do so.
  • Never give or recommend your medication to other people in your family or to friends whose symptoms appear to be similar to yours. Pills that can help you may be very dangerous for someone else. Their doctor will decide which medication is best for them.
  • Many prescription and non-prescription drugs may interact with each other in a way which may worsen your condition or cause unwanted side effects. In some situations, they may still be used together and your doctor will monitor you more closely. Make sure you tell all your doctors and your pharmacist about all the medications you take, including non-prescription medications, dietary supplements and any herbal or alternative medications.