Losartan - Uses - Dosages - Side Effects - Precautions

Losartan: Frequently Asked Questions Answered

What is losartan?

Losartan is an angiotensin II receptor blocker. This drug is used to treat hypertension and protect kidneys from the damage caused by chronic diabetes. It is usually administered orally. It is advised to take it at the same time every day. Your doctor may prescribe this drug even if your blood pressure is stable. However, if you are pregnant, or have diabetes and are already taking any drug that contains aliskiren (Tekamlo, Valturna, Tekturna, Amturnide, etc.), you should not take losartan.

What are the uses of losartan?

Losartan belongs to a group of drugs called angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) or antagonists. It reduces blood pressure levels, prevents stroke, and protects kidneys from diabetic nephropathy.

Angiotensin is a biochemical that narrows blood vessels and makes it hard for patients with diabetes or heart problems to pump blood. Angiotensin II receptor antagonists inhibit the action of angiotensin and help relax the arteries and veins. This effect makes ARBs like losartan helpful for those with hypertension or diabetic nephropathy and those at risk of developing a stroke.

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What are the side effects of losartan?

Some people do not experience any side effects after consuming losartan. However, some have complained of these adverse symptoms:

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Low blood sugar level
  • Stuffy nose
  • Chest pain
  • Fatigue
  • Back pain

Serious side effects of losartan include:

  • High potassium levels in the blood
  • Allergic reactions
  • Low blood pressure
  • Unexplained weight gain

Losartan may also interfere with other medications and vitamin supplements. Therefore, inform your medical practitioner regarding the list of drugs or herbal products you are currently consuming.

At Yashoda Hospitals, our dedicated team of doctors and pharmacists can help you stay informed about all safety precautions before taking any drug. Contact us for any queries or booking a consultation.


Frequently Asked Questions about Losartan

1. Can losartan cause weight loss?

Yes. Losartan causes weight fat loss by reducing blood cholesterol levels. More specifically, it lowers the amount of bad cholesterol and triglyceride circulating in the blood and fat deposits in the adipose tissue. ARBs also restrict the amount of angiotensin-converting enzymes (ACE) in the body. A 2008 Australian study discovered that an ACE deficiency can spark fat loss and increase metabolism. Thus, ARBs like losartan can cause overall weight loss.

2. Can you drink alcohol with Losartan potassium?

No. Consuming alcohol while taking losartan may cause and even aggravate undesirable side effects. Alcohol can have a sedative effect, manifesting as slowed reflexes, poor judgment, indecisiveness, and sleepiness. It can increase the blood-pressure-lowering mechanism of losartan. This can result in serious adverse effects like high potassium levels, allergic reactions, and kidney damage.

3. Does losartan cause insomnia?

Yes. Losartan may cause insomnia or sleeping difficulties. ARBs like losartan may elevate the levels of potassium in your blood. High blood potassium levels may lead to diarrhea, leg cramps, joint aches, muscle soreness, and bone pain. All these interfere with your ability to get a good night’s sleep.

4. How long does losartan stay in your system?

It takes anywhere around 6–9 hours for half of the losartan you consume to leave your system. After entering your body, the drug gets broken down into smaller particles called metabolites. The drug, after rendering its effects, is excreted completely from the blood through urine in a couple of days.

5. Is Losartan hard on the kidneys?

Not many who take losartan complain of renal problems. However, some have reported increased serum creatinine levels after consuming losartan. So, it is recommended to discuss with your medical practitioner if you experience swelling in feet, legs, or ankles; protein in urine; or changes in urine color and odor after consuming losartan.

6. Is Losartan safe for the long term?

Yes. Losartan is safe for long-term use. It is very effective in reducing blood pressure, preventing the occurrence of stroke if you’re at risk, and improving kidney function in patients with diabetic nephropathy. But if you experience side effects like increased heartbeat, swelling in feet, increased blood potassium levels, or weight gain, consult your medical practitioner about your dosage or medical alternatives.

7. Can losartan raise blood pressure?

No. Losartan does not raise your blood pressure. But if you abruptly stop taking the drug, it may cause your heartbeat rate to increase. This raises the risk of heart attacks. Some of the side effects of losartan may also include fast or irregular heartbeat, panting, breathing difficulties, and dizziness.

8. Can losartan cause hair loss?

No. Losartan does not cause hair loss. No evidence or literature study has linked losartan to cause hair loss. On the other hand, you may experience hair loss as an effect of stress on your body and due to other medications. If you experience significant hair loss after taking losartan, consult with your medical practitioner to have the cause pinpointed.

9. Why is losartan bad for you?

You can consume losartan safely for a long time. However, sometimes, it may cause your kidneys to not function properly. So, it is advised to consult with your medical practitioner if you start experiencing any side effects either due to consuming losartan alone or along with any other drugs, supplements, or herbal products.

10. Should I eat bananas if I take losartan?

No. It is not very safe to consume foods rich in potassium like bananas while taking medicines that inhibit angiotensin like losartan. Losartan lowers blood pressure by increasing the levels of potassium in the blood. Since bananas are rich in potassium, consuming them while taking losartan may cause your potassium levels to spike. However, occasional intake should not cause any harm.

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Disclaimer: The information provided herein is accurate, updated and complete as per the best practices of the Company. Please note that this information should not be treated as a replacement for physical medical consultation or advice. We do not guarantee the accuracy and the completeness of the information so provided. The absence of any information and/or warning to any drug shall not be considered and assumed as an implied assurance of the Company. We do not take any responsibility for the consequences arising out of the aforementioned information and strongly recommend you for a physical consultation in case of any queries or doubts.