Why is this medication prescribed?
Terazosin is a medication primarily prescribed for the treatment of high blood pressure (hypertension) and benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), which is an enlarged prostate gland in men.
- Hypertension: Terazosin works by relaxing blood vessels, allowing blood to flow more easily, which helps to lower blood pressure.
- Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH): Terazosin helps to relax the muscles in the prostate and bladder neck, making it easier to urinate.
How should this medicine be used?
As for how terazosin should be used:
- Dosage: The dosage of terazosin will depend on the condition being treated, the severity of the condition, and individual response to the medication. It’s typically started at a low dose and gradually increased under medical supervision.
- Administration: Terazosin is usually taken orally, once daily, usually at bedtime to minimize the risk of dizziness or fainting due to a sudden drop in blood pressure.
- Follow Doctor’s Instructions: It’s essential to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully regarding dosage and timing. Do not stop taking terazosin suddenly without consulting your doctor, as it may lead to a sudden increase in blood pressure.
- Regular Monitoring: Your doctor may monitor your blood pressure and other relevant parameters regularly to ensure the medication is working effectively and to detect any potential side effects.
It’s important to note that terazosin, like any medication, may cause side effects. Common side effects include dizziness, lightheadedness, headache, drowsiness, and nasal congestion. More serious side effects are rare but can include fainting, irregular heartbeat, and swelling of the ankles or feet. If you experience any severe side effects or have concerns about taking terazosin, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Other uses for this medicine
Some off-label uses of terazosin may include:
- Management of urinary retention: Terazosin may be prescribed to help relieve urinary retention, a condition where the bladder is unable to empty completely.
- Treatment of urinary symptoms in women: In some cases, terazosin may be used to alleviate urinary symptoms such as urgency, frequency, and nocturia in women, although this is less common than its use in men with BPH.
- Management of symptoms associated with kidney stones: Terazosin may be used to help relax the muscles in the urinary tract, facilitating the passage of kidney stones and reducing associated pain.
- Treatment of Raynaud’s disease: Terazosin may be used off-label to improve blood flow and reduce symptoms associated with Raynaud’s disease, a condition characterized by spasms in the small blood vessels of the extremities, typically triggered by cold temperatures or stress.
What special precautions should I follow?
Special precautions to follow when taking terazosin include:
- Orthostatic Hypotension: Terazosin can cause a sudden drop in blood pressure when going from a sitting or lying position to standing, leading to dizziness or fainting. To minimize this risk, rise slowly from a lying or sitting position, especially when starting treatment or when the dosage is increased.
- Liver or Kidney Problems: Inform your doctor if you have any liver or kidney problems before starting terazosin, as dosage adjustments may be necessary.
- Cataract Surgery: If you are scheduled for cataract surgery, inform your eye surgeon that you are taking terazosin or have taken it in the past. Terazosin can cause complications during cataract surgery, and special precautions may be needed.
- Alcohol and Other Medications: Avoid alcohol and certain medications that can worsen dizziness or drowsiness when taking terazosin.
- Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: Terazosin should only be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding if the potential benefits outweigh the risks, and under the supervision of a healthcare professional.
Always follow your doctor’s instructions and notify them of any other medications or supplements you are taking before starting terazosin.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
There are no specific dietary restrictions associated with terazosin. However, it’s generally advisable to follow a healthy, balanced diet low in sodium and saturated fats to help manage conditions like hypertension and maintain overall health.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
If you miss a dose of terazosin, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Terazosin, like any medication, can cause side effects in some people. Not everyone will experience side effects, and the severity and frequency of side effects can vary from person to person. Common side effects of terazosin include:
- Dizziness: Terazosin can cause dizziness, especially when rising from a sitting or lying position. This is due to its ability to lower blood pressure, leading to reduced blood flow to the brain.
- Lightheadedness: Similar to dizziness, lightheadedness may occur, particularly when starting treatment or when the dosage is increased.
- Headache: Some individuals may experience headaches while taking terazosin. These headaches are usually mild to moderate in intensity.
- Fatigue: Feeling tired or fatigued is a common side effect of terazosin. This may occur particularly at the beginning of treatment or with higher doses.
- Nasal Congestion: Terazosin may cause nasal congestion or a stuffy nose in some people.
- Edema: Swelling of the ankles, feet, or hands (edema) can occur with terazosin use, although this side effect is less common.
- Abnormal Ejaculation: In men, terazosin may cause abnormal ejaculation, such as decreased semen volume or retrograde ejaculation (where semen enters the bladder instead of exiting the body through the urethra).
- Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension): Terazosin can cause low blood pressure, especially during the initial stages of treatment or with dose adjustments. This may manifest as dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting.
- Palpitations: Some individuals may experience palpitations or an awareness of their heartbeat while taking terazosin.
- Vision Changes: Rarely, terazosin may cause vision changes such as blurred vision or difficulty focusing.
It’s important to note that these are not all the possible side effects of terazosin. Some individuals may experience other side effects not listed here. If you experience any persistent or severe side effects while taking terazosin, or if you have concerns about side effects, it’s essential to contact your healthcare provider for advice. Additionally, if you experience symptoms of a severe allergic reaction, such as difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or throat, or severe dizziness, seek immediate medical attention.
What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?
Storage of Terazosin:
- Store terazosin at room temperature away from light and moisture.
- Keep the medication out of reach of children and pets.
- Do not store terazosin in the bathroom, as moisture and humidity can affect its potency.
- Keep terazosin in its original container, tightly closed, and away from heat sources.
Disposal of Terazosin:
- Dispose of terazosin properly according to local guidelines or regulations.
- Do not flush terazosin down the toilet or pour it down the drain unless instructed to do so.
- If you have unused or expired terazosin, consult your pharmacist or healthcare provider for proper disposal instructions.
In case of emergency/overdose
- In case of an overdose of terazosin, seek emergency medical attention or call your local poison control center immediately.
- Symptoms of terazosin overdose may include severe dizziness, fainting, weakness, and dangerously low blood pressure.
What other information should I know?
- Inform all healthcare providers involved in your care that you are taking terazosin, including dentists and emergency medical personnel.
- Attend all scheduled appointments with your healthcare provider for monitoring of your condition and response to treatment.
- Do not stop taking terazosin suddenly without consulting your healthcare provider, as this can lead to a sudden increase in blood pressure or worsening of symptoms.
- Inform your healthcare provider of any other medications, supplements, or herbal products you are taking, as they may interact with terazosin.
- If you have any questions or concerns about terazosin or its use, consult your healthcare provider or pharmacist for guidance.
It’s essential to follow these instructions carefully to ensure the safe and effective use of terazosin and to minimize the risk of adverse effects or complications.