What are Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules?
Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules are used to relieve the symptoms of urinary retention caused by an enlarged prostate. This condition, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), is a relatively common ailment among men and becomes more likely to present as they get older.
The enlarged prostate blocks the flow of urine and causes several renal difficulties. These symptoms include: the need to pass urine urgently, a higher frequency of urination (often 8+ times a day), a wait before urine starts to flow, a weak or dribbling flow of urine, and the inability to completely empty the bladder when passing urine.
The active ingredient within these capsules is tamsulosin hydrochloride. This ingredient relaxes the muscles around the prostate. In turn, this allows the urine to flow freely and without pain.
Sometimes, more than one type of medication is required to control the symptoms of prostate enlargement. That's why Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules are often used in combination with other medicines.
Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules are available on prescription, online and over the counter.
How do Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules work?
To understand how Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules work, first you need to understand why an enlarged prostate can cause urinary retention.
The prostate gland sits at the top of the tube that connects the bladder to the urethra. This gland often enlarges as a man gets older, which is perfectly normal. However, if the gland gets too big, it presses on the urethra and blocks the flow of urine from the bladder, resulting in various symptoms including the inability to pass urine or empty the bladder fully.
The active ingredient in these capsules, tamsulosin, is an alpha-blocker. The muscle within the prostate has several alpha receptors. This medication obstructs the messages to that muscle and therefore makes it relax.
In turn, this relieves the pressure on the urethra, eliminating the blockage and allowing urine to flow past the prostate gland. This makes it much easier to empty the bladder.
As these capsules are modified-release, this medication dissolves slowly in your stomach and releases tamsulosin gradually into the bloodstream.
It may take up to four weeks for your symptoms of BPH and urinary retention to improve. However, as this is a chronic condition, it's likely that you'll have to continue treatment on an ongoing basis.
Consult your doctor if your condition doesn't improve within four weeks of using these capsules or if it gets worse during this time.
How to use Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules
Typically, you will be required to take one Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsule every day. However, the dosage may be altered due to your medical condition and your doctor's preferred course of treatment.
- Always take the dosage recommended by your pharmacist or doctor
- Swallow that dose with a drink of water or juice
- You must not break, chew or crush the capsules
- The capsules can be taken with or without food
- Be aware that your first dose can cause a sudden drop in your blood pressure. This may mean you experience dizziness, feeling faint or intense sweating.
- Because of this, it's best to take your first dose before bed. Stay lying down until these symptoms have passed.
- After your first dose, you may take the capsules at a time of day that is convenient for you. Try to take them after the same meal every day.
- If you forget to take a dose, do so as soon as you remember. If you don't remember until the next day, when the next dose is due, skip the missed dose and take the next dose as normal.
- Do not take a double-dose to make up for a missed dose
What dosages are available for Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules
There is only one dosage available. Each 400mcg capsule contains 400mcg of tamsulosin hydrochloride. These capsules come in blister packs in a variety of sizes.
What are the side effects of Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules?
Medication affects people differently and you may use this medicine without experiencing any side effects.
The most common side effect of Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules is dizziness, because they cause a fall in blood pressure. This can affect your ability to drive, so exercise caution and ensure that your reactions are normal before doing so. Also, be careful using tools or heavy machinery.
You are most at risk of experiencing dizziness when you first start taking the medicine, increase the dose or restart the treatment.
You may also experience ejaculation problems when using this medicine, including retrograde ejaculation. This is when semen goes into the bladder rather than exiting via the penis. You may also notice the volume of fluid you ejaculate is smaller or completely absent. Do not worry as neither of these eventualities are cause for concern.
Other common side effects of Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules include a runny or stuffy nose, headache, feeling weak and an intense awareness of your heartbeat (palpitations).
In rare cases, you may experience some more serious side effects. If you do, consult your doctor immediately.
One such side effect is fainting due to low blood pressure and another is allergic reaction. This may include a rash or itching on the throat, tongue or face which may result in difficulty breathing.
Very rarely, you may experience a prolonged erection (for four hours or more). If this occurs, tell your doctor straight away in order to avoid permanent damage.
What are the precautions/interactions of Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules?
Before you take Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules, inform your doctor or pharmacist about any allergies you have. You should also inform them if you have ever experienced low blood pressure, eye problems (cataracts and glaucoma) or issues with your liver or kidneys.
As a precaution, limit the amount of alcohol and caffeine you consume whilst using this medicine. The first can inhibit the effectiveness of the tamsulosin and the latter can exacerbate your symptoms.
You should also avoid smoking whilst taking this medication as it may exacerbate your symptoms and put you at greater risk of side effects.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice before taking Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules in combination with any other medications (including over-the-counter medicines and herbal remedies).
This particularly applies if you are using any of the following:
- anaesthetics (if you're going to have any surgery that requires an anaesthetic tell the medical staff you're taking tamsulosin)
- benzodiazepines, e.g. diazepam
- diuretics, e.g. furosemide
- any medication to treat high blood pressure
- nitrates, e.g. glyceryl trinitrate
- other alpha blockers, e.g. prazosin
- phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitors for erectile dysfunction, e.g. avanafil
If you are taking medication to treat erectile dysfunction or pulmonary hypertension and use Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules, your blood pressure may become too low and you may faint or experience dizziness.
Other medications can impact the level of tamsulosin in your body and result in the increased likelihood of serious side effects. These include but are not limited to:
- azole antifungals
- HIV protease inhibitors
If you are due to have eye surgery and are using Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules you should inform your eye specialist that you are using this medication.
The effects of these capsules on children under 18 years old have not been established, so this group should not use this medication unless advised by a doctor.
Tamsulosin only affects the prostate gland, so women have no need to use this medication.
How to buy Tamsulosin 400mcg Modified-Release Capsules online
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Getting Tamsulosin Capsules delivered in the UK
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