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Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) is a thiazide diuretic (water pill) medication often prescribed to treat hypertension, also known as high blood pressure. It works by blocking salt and water absorption in the kidneys, in turn causing water to be excreted from the body. This reduces the amount of fluid in the blood vessels, helping to reduce the pressure of blood against the vessel walls.
Hydrochlorothiazide is an important antihypertensive agent which can be used alone or in combination with other medications to lower blood pressure depending on the patient's needs. In addition, Hydrochlorothiazide can help prevent serious medical conditions that can cause long-term damage such as heart attacks, stroke, and kidney problems by lowering blood pressure.
Hydrochlorothiazide has the added benefit of being considered safe for patients who cannot be put at risk of hyperkalemia, a disorder characterized by an abnormally high potassium level in the bloodstream. This makes hydrochlorothiazide a valuable tool in treating hypertension, as it offers physicians another option when treating high blood pressure.
Uses and Dosage
Hydrochlorothiazide medication should be taken orally in accordance with the instructions of your physician, generally once daily in the morning, either with or without food. It is advisable to take this medication at least four hours prior to bedtime, as otherwise, you may need to wake up to urinate.
Hydrochlorothiazide is an effective treatment for reducing high blood pressure; however, it may not entirely cure the condition. To ensure that your blood pressure is consistently lowered, it is essential that you adhere to the prescribed dosage and adhere to the recommended treatment schedule. Failure to do so may result in an elevation in blood pressure, diminishing the effectiveness of the treatment.
The recommended dosage depends on the patient's condition and the severity of the symptoms.
- For the treatment of high blood pressure, the usual starting dose is 25-50mg per day, taken as a single dose or divided into two doses.
- For edema and other cardiovascular conditions, the usual starting dose is 12.5-25mg per day. The dose may be increased up to 50-100mg if necessary.
Common Hydrochlorothiazide Side Effects May Include:
- Weakness or fatigue
- Muscle cramps or spasms
- Feeling like you might pass out
- Rash, itching, or swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat)
- Severe dizziness
- Severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back
- Nausea or vomiting
- Mouth or skin sores
- Easy bruising
- Unusual bleeding
- Pale skin
- Cold hands or feet
- Feeling light-headed
- Dehydration and electrolyte imbalance
Serious Side Effects of Hydrochlorothiazide
- Decrease in vision and eye pain
- Black or tarry stools
- Bleeding gums
- Blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
- Blood in the urine
- Difficulty breathing
Form and strength
Hydrochlorothiazide is available in the following form and strengths:
- 12.5 mg
- 25 mg
- 50 mg
- HCTZ may interact with other medications, including blood thinners, lithium, insulin, NSAIDs, and certain antibiotics. You should discuss any medications you are taking with your doctor before use.
- There is a risk of experiencing an allergic reaction to HCTZ. If you ever experience any type of allergic reaction while taking this medication, stop taking it and seek immediate medical attention.
- Alcohol should be avoided while taking HCTZ, as it may increase the risk of side effects.
- HCTZ should not be taken by women who are pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor right away.
- HCTZ is not recommended for children under the age of 18.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the side effects of Hydrochlorothiazide?
Common side effects of HCTZ include increased urination, dizziness, weakness, and headache. More serious side effects may include dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, and kidney damage. Other potential side effects include rashes, nausea, vomiting, and loss of appetite.
When should Hydrochlorothiazide not be used?
HCTZ should not be used by individuals who are allergic to the drug, who are pregnant or breastfeeding, or those with diabetes, gout, kidney or liver disease, or an electrolyte imbalance. It is also not recommended for use in people with high cholesterol, as it may increase their risk of heart disease.
What is the recommended dosage of Hydrochlorothiazide?
The recommended dosage of HCTZ depends on the individual and their medical condition. It is important to follow the instructions provided by your doctor or pharmacist. Do not take more or less than the recommended amount, and do not stop taking the medication without consulting your doctor first.
How long does it take for Hydrochlorothiazide to work?
Hydrochlorothiazide starts working about 2 hours after you take it, and its effects can last up to 12 hours and its peak effect occurs within 4 hours. It usually takes about two to four days until you notice hydrochlorothiazide working.
It's important to purchase Hydrochlorothiazide from verified Canadian pharmacy.