triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide (cont.)

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Diuretics eliminate salt (sodium) and water from the body. Hydrochlorothiazide is a diuretic that can be used alone for treating high blood pressure and edema. It works by blocking sodium and water reabsorption in the kidneys, thereby reducing sodium and water in the body. (Whereas it is clear how hydrochlorothiazide eliminates water from the body, its mechanism of action in lowering high blood pressure is not well understood.) To compensate for the increased amount of sodium and water in the tubules that will be lost as urine, the kidney tries to reabsorb more sodium and water. It does this by removing potassium from the blood and putting it into the tubules in exchange for sodium (and water) in the tubules. As a result, blood potassium levels fall. Triamterene is a diuretic that prevents reabsorption of sodium in exchange for potassium. Thus, it reduces sodium and water in the body but also prevents the depletion of potassium. For this reason, triamterene is called a potassium sparing diuretic. By combining hydrochlorothiazide with triamterene, sodium and water are eliminated from the body without the loss of potassium. However, this drug may allow potassium levels to increase so potassium levels should be closely monitored.



PREPARATIONS: Tablets: 37.5/25, 75/50 mg. Capsules: 37.5/25, 50/25 mg.

STORAGE: Triamterene/hydrochlorothiazide should be store at room temperature, 15 C - 30 C (59 F - 86 F).

PRESCRIBED FOR: Triamterene/hydrochlorothiazide is used for treating high blood pressure and edema.

DOSING: The recommended dose is 1-2 tablets or capsules daily. The maximum dose is 75/50 mg daily. Like other diuretics, it should be taken in the morning in order to avoid excessive trips to the bathroom at night.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Triamterene increases potassium levels in the body. Therefore, combining triamterene/hydrochlorothiazide with ACE inhibitors [for example, enalapril (Vasotec)], angiotensin receptor blockers [for example, losartan (Cozaar)], aliskiren (Tekturna), eplerenone (Inspra), potassium supplements or other drugs that also increase potassium may lead to dangerous potassium levels in the body.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/29/2014

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