benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide, Lotensin HCT

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What is benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Lotensin HCT is a combination of two drugs, benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide. Benazepril is an angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor that is used for treating high blood pressure. Other ACE inhibitors include enalapril (Vasotec), quinapril (Accupril), captopril (Capoten), fosinopril (Monopril), ramipril (Altace), moexipril (Univasc) and trandolapril (Mavik). ACE is an enzyme in the body which is important for the formation of angiotensin II. Angiotensin II causes constriction of arteries in the body, thereby elevating blood pressure. ACE inhibitors (for example, benazepril) lower blood pressure by inhibiting the formation of angiotensin II, thus relaxing the arteries. Relaxing the arteries not only lowers blood pressure, but the lower blood pressure also reduces the heart's work and improves the output of blood from the heart in patients with heart failure.

Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) is a diuretic (water pill) used for treating high blood pressure (hypertension) and accumulation of fluid. It works by blocking salt and fluid reabsorption in the kidneys, causing increased output of salt and water in the urine (diuresis). The mechanism of its action in lowering high blood pressure is not well understood.

The combination of benazepril and HCTZ reduces blood pressure better than either drug alone. Lotensin was approved by the FDA in May 1992.

What brand names are available for benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide?

Lotensin HCT

Is benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide?

Yes

What are the side effects of benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide?

Lotensin HCT has side effects of its individual components. The most common side effects are:

A dry, persistent cough has been reported with the use of benazepril and other ACE inhibitors. Coughing resolves after discontinuing the medication.

In rare instances,liver dysfunction and skin yellowing (jaundice) have been reported with ACE inhibitors. Benazepril should not be taken by people with a known allergy to ACE inhibitors. Swelling of the facial tissues and even the upper airways has been reported with ACE inhibitors on very rare occasions, and can lead to serious breathing difficulties.

Benazepril may reduce kidney function in some patients and should not be used by patients who have bilateral renal artery stenosis (narrowing of both arteries supplying the kidneys). Rare cases of rhabdomyolysis (muscle breakdown), reduced number of platelets, and pancreatitis have been reported. Hydrochlorothiazide may increase blood glucose levels.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/21/2015

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