enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide, Vaseretic

  • 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 enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?

Vaseretic is a combination of enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) and is used for treating high blood pressure (hypertension). It is in a class of drugs called angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. ACE is an enzyme in the body that causes the formation of angiotensin II. Angiotensin II causes the muscles surrounding the arteries in the body to contract, thereby narrowing the arteries and elevating the blood pressure. ACE inhibitors such as enalapril (Vasotec) lower blood pressure by preventing the formation of angiotensin II thereby relaxing the arteries.

HCTZ is a diuretic (water pill) used for treating high blood pressure and accumulation of fluid. It works by blocking salt and water reabsorption in the kidneys, thus causing increased urine output (diuresis). The mechanism of its action in lowering high blood pressure is not well understood. The combination of enalapril and HCTZ reduces blood pressure better than either drug alone. The FDA approved Vaseretic in October 1986.

What brand names are available for enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide?

Vaseretic

Is enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide available as a generic drug?

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

Do I need a prescription for enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide?

Yes

What are the side effects of enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide?

The side effects of the Vaseretic are similar to the side effects of the individual component drugs:

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

Other side effects include of ACE inhibitors include:

In rare instances

  • liver dysfunction and skin yellowing (jaundice) have been reported with ACE inhibitors.
  • In susceptible individuals ACE inhibitors may reduce kidney function. Enalapril may cause hypersensitivity (allergic) reactions and angioedema (swelling of face, lips, tongue, throat).

Side effects of HCTZ include:

Patients allergic to sulfa may also be allergic to HCTZ because of the similarity in the chemical structure of the medications.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/9/2015

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