Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) –
What You Should Know

Brand Names: Aquazide H, HydroDIURIL, Microzide, Esidrix,

What is Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ)?

The information about Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) contained herein is a compilation of materials available from drugs.com and simplified for the average consumer.

Hydrochlorothiazide hctzHydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ), also known by brand names Aquazide H, HydroDIURIL, Microzide, or Esidrix is a diuretic that helps rid your body of salt (sodium) and water. Hydrochlorothiazide works works by reducing the ability of the kidneys to reabsorb salt and water from the urine and into the body thereby increasing the production and output of urine.

There are drug free alternatives to lowering your blood pressure that may be effective for you. Read about them here.

Caution, losing too much sodium or other minerals (e.g., zinc, potassium and magnesium) in the urine can lead to serious new problems.

Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) treats fluid retention (edema) in people with congestive heart failure, cirrhosis of the liver, or kidney disorders, or edema caused by taking steroids or estrogen. This medication is also used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension).

How to use Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) :

  • Chlorthalidone taking pillUse Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor.
  • Take Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) by mouth with food, preferably in the morning.
  • To be sure this medication is helping your condition, your blood pressure will need to be checked on a regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled appointments as your doctor may need to change your dosage in order to make sure you are getting the best results.
  • Your blood and urine may need to be tested if you have been vomiting or are dehydrated.
  • Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) can interfere with the results of a thyroid test. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using a thiazide diuretic.
  • Store Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) at room temperature away from heat, light, and moisture.
  • If you miss a dose, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ).

What to know before using Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ):

If any of the following apply to you, discuss with your doctor before taking Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ):

  • allergic to sulfa drugskidneys
  • have liver disease
  • kidney disease
  • asthma
  • allergies
  • gout
  • glaucoma
  • diabetes
  • allergic to sulfa drugs

Avoid drinking alcohol, which can increase some of the side effects of Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ).

If you are pregnant or nursing: Hydrochlorothiazide can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use HCTZ without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Hydrochlorothiazide sweatMany other drugs have interactions with Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ). If you are using any prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, or herbal products, talk with your doctor before starting on Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ). Do not start a new medication without talking to your doctor. Keep a list of your medications to show to any healthcare provider who treats you.

Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated during exercise and in hot weather. Follow your doctor’s instructions about how much fluid to drink, as drinking too much liquid can be as unsafe as not drinking enough.

Side effects of Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ):

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these allergic reactions:

  • hives
  • difficulty breathing
  • swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • Abdominal or stomach pain
  • back, leg, or stomach pains
  • black, tarry stools
  • bleeding gums
  • blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  • bloating
  • blood in the urine or stools
  • bloody urine
  • blue lips and fingernails
  • blurred vision
  • burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, “pins and needles”, or tingling feelings
  • chest pain
  • chills
  • clay-colored stools
  • cloudy urine
  • cold sweats
  • confusion
  • constipation
  • cough or hoarseness
  • coughing that sometimes produces a pink frothy sputum
  • coughing up blood
  • cracks in the skin
  • darkened urine
  • decrease in urine output or decrease in urine-concentrating ability
  • decreased frequency or amount of urine
  • diarrhea
  • difficult, fast, or noisy breathing, sometimes with wheezing
  • difficulty with breathing
  • difficulty with swallowing
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position
  • dry mouth
  • fast or irregular heartbeat
  • fever
  • flushed, dry skin
  • fruit-like breath odor
  • general body swelling
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • general feeling of tiredness or weakness
  • greatly decreased frequency of urination or amount of urine
  • headache
  • hives
  • increased blood pressure
  • increased hunger
  • increased sweating
  • increased thirst
  • increased urination
  • indigestion
  • itching
  • joint pain, stiffness, or swelling
  • loss of appetite
  • loss of heat from the body
  • lower back or side pain
  • muscle cramps or pain
  • nausea or vomiting
  • nosebleeds
  • numbness, tingling, pain, or weakness in the hands or feet
  • pain in the joints or muscles
  • painful or difficult urination
  • pains in the stomach, side, or abdomen, possibly radiating to the back
  • pale skin
  • pinpoint red spots on the skin
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • rash
  • red, irritated eyes
  • red skin lesions, often with a purple center
  • red, swollen skin
  • redness, soreness, or itching skin
  • scaly skin
  • seizures
  • shortness of breath
  • sore throat
  • sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
  • sores, welting, or blisters
  • sugar in the urine
  • swelling of the face, fingers, legs, ankles, feet, or lower legs
  • swollen or painful glands
  • tenderness of salivary glands
  • thickening of bronchial secretions
  • tightness in the chest
  • trembling
  • troubled breathing
  • unpleasant breath odor
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • unusual weight loss
  • vomiting of blood
  • weakness and heaviness of the legs
  • weight gain
  • wheezing
  • yellow eyes or skin

Less serious side effects may include:

  • Cramping
  • decreased interest in sexual intercourse
  • difficulty having a bowel movement (stool)
  • feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • hair loss or thinning of the hair
  • inability to have or keep an erection
  • increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight
  • loss in sexual ability, desire, drive, or performance
  • muscle spasm
  • pinpoint red or purple spots on the skin
  • redness or other discoloration of the skin
  • restlessness
  • sensation of spinning
  • severe sunburn
  • weakness

The information about Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) comes from drugs.com

Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) Natural Alternatives:

tikvawithdrinkIf you are taking Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) or other diuretic medications, the various ingredients  in Tikva have been proven through either clinical trials or other research to lower your blood pressure naturally by dilating (widening) the arteries. Tikva does not act as a diuretic.

Several of the ingredients in Tikva can also increase circulation, dissolve plaque that is already in the arteries and reduce new plaque from forming. In addition, there are ingredients in Tikva to help reduce stress that often increases blood pressure without all of the side effects.
Read more about the natural ingredients in Tikva on our research and ingredients page, by clicking here.

watermellonVarious herbs, foods and beverages offer a natural diuretic effect; however, they should be used with caution, in the event of unknown medical conditions with fluid retention as a symptom, or due to side effects with other medications. Consult with your physician prior to using natural diuretics.

Cutting back on sodium and exercising more can also help reduce fluid buildup.

Eating more fruits and vegetables that act as diuretics, like watermelon, grapes, berries, celery, asparagus, onions, garlic, and bell peppers, may be another beneficial solution.

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The information provided on this page should not be used to decide whether or not to take Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) or any other medicine. Consult your doctor to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition.

This information about Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) is a brief summary and does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ).

This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must speak with your doctor for complete information about the risks and benefits of using Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ).