Altace HCT is a prescription medication used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). It is often used to treat essential hypertension in patients for whom combination therapy is considered appropriate. It contains two active ingredients: ramipril and hydrochlorothiazide.
Ramipril belongs to the class of medications called ACE inhibitors, which are used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension) and heart failure. Hydrochlorothiazide is a diuretic that helps to reduce the amount of water in the body, which in turn helps to lower blood pressure.
Altace HCT should only be used under the supervision of a doctor and according to their instructions.
Use and Dosage
Altace HCT comes in the form of tablet to take orally with or without food, typically once daily or as prescribed by a doctor. The tablet should not be crushed or split and should be taken whole with a glass of water. If taken close to bedtime, the patient may need to wake up to urinate, so take it first thing in the morning.
If the patient takes medication to lower cholesterol, such as cholestyramine or colestipol, they should take Altace HCT at least 4 hours before or 4 to 6 hours after these medications.
The appropriate dosage of Altace HCT depends on the individual’s medical condition and response to treatment. Take the tablet regularly to receive the most benefit. To help remember to take it, take it at the same time each day. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased. Patients should continue taking the medication even if they feel well.
Do not stop taking Altace HCT Tablet without first consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is abruptly stopped. Skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time. Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
Common Side Effects of Altace HCT (Ramipril/Hydrochlorothiazide):
Serious Side Effects of Altace HCT (Ramipril/Hydrochlorothiazide):
- Chest pain
- Irregular heartbeats
- Light-headed feeling, like you might pass out
- Little or no urination
- Loss of movement
- Sore throat
- Tingly feeling
- Tired feeling
- Yellowing of your skin or eyes (Jaundice)
Forms and Strength
Altace HCT (Ramipril/Hydrochlorothiazide) is available in the following forms and strength:
Altace HCT: Tablet
- Fetal toxicity: Altace HCT can cause harm to the developing fetus and should not be taken during pregnancy. If you become pregnant while taking Altace HCT, contact your doctor immediately.
- Kidney problems: Altace HCT may affect your kidneys and can cause kidney problems, especially if you have pre-existing kidney disease.
- Liver problems: Altace HCT may also affect your liver, especially if you have pre-existing liver disease. Your doctor may need to adjust your dosage or monitor your liver function regularly while you are taking the medication.
- Allergic reactions: Some people may be allergic to one or both active ingredients in Altace HCT. If you experience any signs of an allergic reaction such as difficulty breathing, hives, or swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat, seek emergency medical attention.
- Electrolyte imbalances: Hydrochlorothiazide (one of the active ingredients in Altace HCT) can cause electrolyte imbalances (such as low levels of potassium, sodium, or magnesium), so your doctor may need to monitor your electrolyte levels regularly while you are taking the medication.
- Dehydration: Hydrochlorothiazide can also cause dehydration, especially if you are taking high doses or have poor kidney function. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids while taking the medication.
- Diabetes: Hydrochlorothiazide may cause an increase in blood sugar levels and may also worsen existing diabetes. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medications or monitor your blood sugar levels more closely while you are taking the medication.
- Gout: Hydrochlorothiazide can increase the risk of gout attacks in some people. If you have a history of gout, be sure to inform your doctor before taking the medication.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How long does it typically take for Altace HCT to start working?
Altace HCT may start working to lower blood pressure within a few hours of taking the first dose, but it may take several weeks for the full effects of the medication to be seen.
Can Altace HCT be used to treat heart failure?
Yes, Altace HCT may be used to treat heart failure in certain patients who are already taking an ACE inhibitor and a diuretic separately.
Should Altace HCT be taken with food?
Altace HCT may be taken with or without food but take it at the same time each day to help maintain consistent blood levels of the medication.
What should I do if I miss a dose of Altace HCT?
If you miss a dose of Altace HCT, 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 take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
Can Altace HCT be crushed or split?
No, Altace HCT should not be crushed or split. It should be taken whole with a glass of water.