What’s the Buzz

The Bee Healthy Blog

How Long Does It Take Lisinopril To Work?

Key Takeaways

  • Lisinopril starts working within 2 hours of taking it, peak effectiveness occurs in around 6 hours, and the effects of the drug last for 24 hours. This may vary depending on your kidney function. However, it can take a few weeks to see the full effect on your blood pressure. 

More than 100 million, or about 1 in 3 American adults, have high blood pressure, and lisinopril is one of the most commonly prescribed medications in the United States and worldwide. It is used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure and to improve survival rates in people who have suffered a heart attack. 

Please continue reading to find out: How quickly does lisinopril lower blood pressure?

How long does it take for lisinopril to lower blood pressure?

Lisinopril starts working within a few hours. Its antihypertensive effects begin within 2 hours of taking a dose, peak effectiveness occurs in around 6 hours, and the effects of the drug last for 24 hours. 

Lisinopril may stay longer in the body if your kidneys are not working as well as they should. However, it can take a few weeks (about 2 to 4 weeks) for this medicine to have its full effect and lower your blood pressure readings. 

Check out our blog about lowering blood pressure fast in an emergency.

If you are taking lisinopril for managing heart failure, it can take even longer, a few weeks to a few months, for you to notice an improvement in your heart failure symptoms.

How does lisinopril treat high blood pressure?

Lisinopril belongs to a class of drugs called angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE inhibitors). 

It blocks the action of the angiotensin-converting enzyme, which is needed to convert a hormone called angiotensin I to a hormone called angiotensin II. Angiotensin II is a vasoconstrictor, i.e., it narrows blood vessels, especially in the kidneys. 

In other words, the ACE inhibitor lisinopril works by stopping the formation of angiotensin II. As a result, lisinopril makes blood vessels wider, thus lowering blood pressure, making blood flow smoother with less pressure, and making it easier for the heart to pump blood.

How do ACE inhibitors and beta blockers compare at treating high blood pressure? Check out our blog to learn more.

How long do you have to stay on lisinopril for high blood pressure?

Most people have to stay on lisinopril treatment long-term. 

Keep in mind that if you are taking lisinopril to treat hypertension or have been prescribed this medicine after a heart attack, you may not have any symptoms. 

You also may not feel any different while you are on lisinopril as high blood pressure, known as the “silent killer,” doesn’t cause any symptoms for years. This does not mean that the medicine is not working. Lisinopril controls these conditions but does not cure them. 

You should continue taking lisinopril even if you feel well. Do not stop taking the medicine without talking to your healthcare professional.

Is 10 mg of lisinopril enough to lower blood pressure?

Taking 10 milligrams (mg) of lisinopril daily may be enough to lower blood pressure levels in some people. Others may need to take a higher dose of lisinopril to achieve blood pressure control. The blood pressure-lowering effects of lisinopril last for 24 hours, which allows you to take a once daily dose. 

The starting dose of lisinopril in adults with hypertension (high blood pressure) is 10 mg once daily. This can be increased up to a maximum dose of 40 mg daily based on blood pressure response. If your blood pressure levels continue to be high on lisinopril, your healthcare provider may add another medication, such as a diuretic (water pill).

The dose for pediatric patients 6 years of age and older is 0.07 mg per kilogram of body weight up to a maximum of 5 mg daily. Lisinopril should only be used in children 6 years or older if their GFR (glomerular filtration rate) is greater than 30 mL/min/1.73 m(milliliter per minute per 1.73 meter square). 

GFR (glomerular filtration rate) test can show how well the kidneys are working by measuring the rate at which blood is filtered each minute by the kidneys. 

For the treatment of heart failure, lisinopril, used in combination with other medications, is usually started at 5 mg once daily and increased, as tolerated, to 40 mg once daily. 

For acute myocardial infarction (heart attack), doctors give 5 mg of lisinopril in the first 24 hours, 5 mg in the next 24 hours, and 10 mg daily thereafter. 

Note: People with kidney problems (decreased renal function due to kidney disease) may need to be started on a lower dose of lisinopril.

Is it best to take lisinopril in the morning or evening?

Your healthcare provider may ask you to take the first dose of lisinopril in the evening before you go to bed because this medication can cause dizziness. Once your body gets used to the medicine, you can take it at any time of day, morning or evening, with or without food. Try to take your medication at around the same time every day. 

Swallow lisinopril tablets whole. Do not cut, crush, or chew them. If you are taking liquid medicine, use a dose-measuring cup or syringe to measure the dose and not a regular spoon from your kitchen.

What are the side effects of lisinopril?

Common side effects of lisinopril include dry cough, dizziness, tiredness, weakness, headache, nausea, diarrhea, runny nose, sneezing, sexual dysfunction, and rash. Tell your healthcare professional if these side effects are severe or do not go away in a few days.

Lisinopril can also cause more serious side effects. Call your doctor immediately or seek emergency medical attention if you develop:

  • Swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue, throat, hands, lower legs, ankles, or feet

  • Trouble breathing or swallowing

  • Chest pain

  • Hoarseness

  • Signs of infection such as fever, chills, sore throat

  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes

  • Lightheadedness

  • Fainting

What should I avoid while taking lisinopril?

Here are some precautions you should take while on lisinopril:

Before starting lisinopril:

  • Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have had an allergic reaction to lisinopril, other ACE inhibitors, any of the active or inactive ingredients in lisinopril formulations, or any other drugs.

  • Give your doctor or pharmacist a complete list of your medications, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines, dietary supplements, and herbal remedies. This will help avoid potentially dangerous drug interactions between lisinopril and your other medications. 

  • Lisinopril may not be safe for people with certain health conditions. Tell your doctor if you have ever had angioedema (swelling and difficulty breathing). Also tell your provider if you have diabetes, kidney disease, diabetic kidney disease, or heart disease.

  • Lisinopril can cause serious harm to an unborn baby. You should not take this medication if you are pregnant. 

While taking lisinopril:

  • Keep all your medical and lab appointments while on lisinopril. Your doctor will start you on a low dose and gradually increase the dose based on your blood pressure response. They may want to order certain blood tests during lisinopril treatment.

  • Do not start any other medicines without checking with your healthcare provider, including cough suppressants for dry cough, which is a common side effect of ACE inhibitors that often results in the discontinuation of lisinopril.

  • Call your doctor immediately if you become pregnant while on lisinopril. You should not take an ACE inhibitor like lisinopril during pregnancy, especially during the second or third trimester, as it can cause harm to the unborn baby.

  • Lisinopril can cause dizziness, tiredness, and weakness. Be careful while driving or doing other potentially hazardous activities until you know how this medicine affects you.

  • Do not drink alcohol while on lisinopril. Alcohol can make side effects like dizziness worse.

  • Tell your doctor if you feel dizzy or notice low blood pressure on home blood pressure checks. Your provider may lower your lisinopril dose.

  • Call your doctor if you have diarrhea, vomiting, excessive sweating, or reduced fluid intake. These conditions can result in a blood pressure drop and cause lightheadedness and fainting. 

  • If you miss a dose of lisinopril, take it as soon as you remember. But if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed dose.

  • Do not use someone else’s leftover medication. Make sure you dispose of unused medication properly through a drug takeback program. 

  • Eat a balanced diet and limit salt intake to help control your blood pressure. Do not take salt substitutes or potassium supplements while on lisinopril without checking with your doctor first.

Save on Your Blood Pressure Medications with BuzzRx!

Manage your blood pressure medication costs with BuzzRx coupons. Here are direct links to substantial savings for each medication:

Remember, these coupons are widely accepted at over 60,000 pharmacies, including major chains like CVS, Walgreens, and Rite Aid. Just present your coupon at the pharmacy to ensure you're getting the best possible price.



  1. https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a692051.html

  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/2442549/#

  3. https://www.nhs.uk/medicines/lisinopril/common-questions-about-lisinopril/#:

  4. https://www.nhs.uk/medicines/lisinopril/how-and-when-to-take-lisinopril/#

  5. https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2014/019777s064lbl.pdf

  6. https://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/lookup.cfm?setid=7d6c31e2-b5a4-4279-8013-a8dad37ea73b#: