GENERIC NAME: HYDRALAZINE/HYDROCHLOROTHIAZIDE - ORAL (hye-DRAL-a-zeen/HYE-droe-KLOR-oh-THYE-a-zide)
BRAND NAME(S): Apresazide
WARNING: This product contains 2 drugs (hydralazine and hydrochlorothiazide). Generally, it should not be used when treating high blood pressure for the first time. Your doctor should first give you each of the drugs separately so that he or she can find the best dose of each drug for you. Use this combination product only if your doctor has decided that the doses of each drug in this product are right for your condition. Your doctor may need to continually adjust your medications depending on your condition.
USES: This medication contains 2 drugs (hydralazine and hydrochlorothiazide) and is used to treat high blood pressure. Hydralazine is called a vasodilator. It works by relaxing blood vessels so blood can flow through the body more easily. Hydrochlorothiazide is a "water pill" (diuretic). It works by increasing the amount of urine that you make. This effect causes your body to get rid of extra salt and water, which probably also helps relax the blood vessels. These 2 drugs are used together when 1 medication is not controlling your blood pressure. Lowering high blood pressure helps prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems.
HOW TO USE: Take this medication by mouth with or without food, usually twice daily or as directed by your doctor. It is best to avoid taking this medication within 4 hours of your bedtime to avoid having to get up to urinate. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have questions about your dosing schedule.Cholestyramine and colestipol can decrease the absorption of this medication. If you are taking either of these drugs, take them at least 4 hours apart from this medication.The dosage is based on your age, medical condition, and response to treatment. Your doctor may start you at a low dose and gradually increase your dose. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same times each day. It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well. Most people with high blood pressure do not feel sick. It may take up to several weeks before you get the full benefit of this drug.Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.Tell your doctor if your condition worsens (for example, your routine blood pressure readings increase).
SIDE EFFECTS: Headache, pounding/fast heartbeat, dizziness, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or abdominal pain may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. You may also experience decreased sexual ability or increased sensitivity to the sun. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.To reduce the risk of dizziness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.This medication may infrequently cause nerve problems. Tell your doctor promptly if you experience numbness or tingling. Your doctor may recommend a vitamin B6 supplement (pyridoxine).Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: severe tiredness, aching/swollen joints, rash on nose and cheeks, swollen glands, change in the amount of urine, bloody/pink urine, dark urine, yellowing eyes/skin, signs of infection (such as fever, chills, persistent sore throat), easy bruising/bleeding.The hydrochlorothiazide in this product may cause a loss of too much body water (dehydration) or salt/minerals. Tell your doctor immediately if you have any of these unlikely but serious symptoms of dehydration or salt/mineral loss: very dry mouth, thirst, muscle cramps/weakness, irregular heartbeat, unusual drowsiness, unusual decrease in the amount of urine, fainting, confusion, seizures.Seek immediate medical attention if this rare but serious side effect occurs: chest/jaw/left arm pain.A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.In the US -Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
PRECAUTIONS: Before taking this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to similar diuretics (such as chlorthalidone); or if you have any other allergies.This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: inability to make urine (anuria), a certain heart condition (coronary heart disease), a certain heart valve problem (rheumatic heart disease of the mitral valve).Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: blood vessel problems, kidney problems, liver problems, asthma, diabetes, lupus, gout, previous stroke, salt/mineral imbalance (such as imbalance of sodium/potassium/calcium/magnesium levels in the body), loss of too much body water (dehydration).This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.This medication may reduce the potassium levels in your blood. Ask your doctor about increasing the amount of potassium in your diet or about using a salt substitute that contains potassium. Your doctor may prescribe a potassium supplement.If you have diabetes, this product may make it harder to control your blood sugar levels. Check your blood sugar levels regularly as directed by your doctor. Tell your doctor immediately if you have symptoms of high blood sugar such as increased thirst/urination. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medication, exercise program, or diet.This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, tanning booths, and sunlamps. Use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors.Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking this medication.Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication, especially dizziness.This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.This medication passes into breast milk. However, it is unlikely to harm a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
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DRUG INTERACTIONS: See also the How to Use section.Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious interactions may occur: cisapride, dofetilide.If you are currently using either of these medications, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting this product.Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: MAO inhibitors (isocarboxazid, linezolid, moclobemide, phenelzine, procarbazine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine), corticosteroids (such as prednisone), lithium, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs-NSAIDs (such as ibuprofen, indomethacin).Check the labels on all your medicines (such as cough-and-cold products, diet aids, pain relievers) because they may contain ingredients that could increase your blood pressure or heart rate. Ask your pharmacist about using those products safely.This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including amylase levels). Make sure laboratory personnel and your doctors know you use this drug.This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
OVERDOSE: If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call the US National Poison Hotline at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe dizziness, fainting, flushing, chest/jaw/left arm pain, irregular heartbeat.
NOTES: Do not share this medication with others.Lifestyle changes such as stress reduction programs, exercise, and dietary changes may help this product work better. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about lifestyle changes that might benefit you.Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as complete blood count, blood mineral levels) may be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.Have your blood pressure checked regularly while taking this medication. Learn how to monitor your own blood pressure, and share the readings with your doctor.
MISSED DOSE: If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
STORAGE: Store at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA) or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).
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