Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Angioedema: As with other medications in this family, quinapril has been reported to cause angioedema (swelling of the mouth, lips, tongue, eye, or throat causing difficulty swallowing or breathing) in a small number of people.
If any of these symptoms occur, stop taking quinapril immediately and seek immediate medical attention. Also, consult your doctor immediately about any unexplained rash, fever, or itching. If you experience angioedema with quinapril, do not take any other ACE inhibitors (e.g., enalapril, lisinopril, or ramipril).
Blood disorders: In rare cases, a low white blood cell count has been reported with people taking this medication. Your doctor may occasionally monitor your level of white blood cells by performing blood tests. Low white blood cell levels may increase your risk for infection.
If you notice any signs of infection (e.g., fever, sore throat), contact your doctor as soon as possible.
Cough: People taking quinapril may develop a dry, persistent cough that usually disappears only after stopping or lowering the dose of quinapril.
Diabetes: ACE inhibitors such as quinapril may lead to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar levels) in people with diabetes. If you have diabetes, discuss with your doctor how this medication may affect your medical condition, how your medical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed.
Kidney function: Changes in kidney function have occurred in certain people who take this medication. The use of diuretics (water pills) or aliskiren may further increase the risk of kidney problems for those already at risk for this problem. If you have reduced kidney function or kidney disease, discuss with your doctor how this medication may affect your medical condition, how your medical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed. If you have kidney function impairment you may require lower doses of this medication.
Liver function: This medication may cause liver problems. If you experience any signs of liver problems such as yellowing of the skin or eyes, fever, generally feeling unwell, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, itching, muscle pain, rash, or swollen glands, contact your doctor immediately. If you have liver problems you will need to be closely monitored by your doctor while taking this medication.
Low blood pressure: Occasionally, blood pressure drops too low after taking quinapril. This usually happens after the first or second dose or when the dose is increased. It is more likely to occur for those who take the medication aliskiren, diuretics, have a salt-restricted diet, are on dialysis, have diarrhea, or are vomiting.
To reduce the risk of dizziness, get up slowly from a lying or sitting position. If low blood pressure causes you to faint or feel lightheaded, contact your doctor.
Potassium levels: Increases in blood levels of potassium occur for approximately 2% of people who take quinapril. This rarely causes problems, but your doctor will likely want to monitor your potassium levels through blood tests.
Reduced alertness: This medication may reduce alertness, especially at the beginning of treatment. Do not drive or perform tasks that require alertness until you know how this medication affects you.
Pregnancy: ACE inhibitors such as quinapril may cause severe harm or death to the developing baby if taken by the mother during pregnancy. This medication should not be used during pregnancy. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, stop taking quinapril immediately and contact your doctor.
Breast-feeding: It is not known whether quinapril passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking this medication, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.
Children: The safety and effectiveness of quinapril have not been established for use by children. Quinapril is not recommended for this age group.