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- What is valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide? How does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What are the uses for valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
- What are the side effects of valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
- What is the dosage for valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
- Is valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
What is valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide? How does it work (mechanism of action)?
Valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide is a combination of two medications that is used to treat high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. It belongs to a class of drugs called angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) which also includes:
Angiotensin, formed in the blood by the action of angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), is a powerful chemical that attaches to angiotensin receptors found in many tissues but primarily on smooth muscle cells surrounding blood vessels. Angiotensin's attachment to the receptors causes the muscles to contract and the blood vessels to narrow (vasoconstrict) which leads to an increase in blood pressure (hypertension). Valsartan blocks the angiotensin receptor. By blocking the action of angiotensin, valsartan dilates (widens) blood vessels and reduces blood pressure. Valsartan belongs to the class of drugs called ARBs or angiotensin II receptor blockers
Hydrochlorothiazide 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 output of urine containing increased amounts of water and salt (diuresis). The mechanism of its action in lowering high blood pressure is not well understood. The combination of valsartan and hydrochlorothiazide reduces blood pressure more that either drug alone.
The FDA approved valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide in March 1998.
What are the uses for valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
Valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide is used for the treatment of blood pressure in patients with or without a history of congestive heart failure.
What are the side effects of valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
Side effect of valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide are the same as its individual components.
Valsartan is generally well-tolerated. The most common side effects of valsartan include:
Patients also may experience:
Rare but serious side effects of valsartan are:
What is the dosage for valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
The recommended starting dose of valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide is 80/12.5 to 160 mg/ 12.5 mg by mouth once daily. If blood pressure is not controlled, doses may be increased every 1 to 2 weeks to a maximum of 320 mg/25 mg per day.
Which drugs or supplements interact with valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
- Increased thirst
- Decreased heart rate
- Blurred vision
- Decreased concentration
- Ringing in the ears
Patients should seek medical attention in cases of lithium toxicity.
Valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide should be used with caution with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like naproxen (Naprosyn), ibuprofen (Motrin), meloxicam (Mobic), and celecoxib (Celebrex) because they can worsen kidney function and lower water removing effects of valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide.
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Is valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
What else should I know about valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide?
- Valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide is available as tablets of 40, 80, 160 and 320 mg. Tablets are scored and can be split.How should I keep valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide
- Valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide tablets should be stored between 15 C and 30 C (59 and 86 F).
- valsartan/hydrochlorothiazide is available in generic form. You need a prescription to obtain this drug.
Valsartan and hydrochlorothiazide (Diovan HCT) is a combination of two prescription medicaiton used to treat high blood pressure. Side effects, drug interactions, dosing, storage, and pregnancy safety information should be reviewed prior to taking any medication.
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Related Disease Conditions
High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High blood pressure (hypertension) is a disease in which pressure within the arteries of the body is elevated. About 75 million people in the US have hypertension (1 in 3 adults), and only half of them are able to manage it. Many people do not know that they have high blood pressure because it often has no has no warning signs or symptoms. Systolic and diastolic are the two readings in which blood pressure is measured. The American College of Cardiology released new guidelines for high blood pressure in 2017. The guidelines now state that blood normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. If either one of those numbers is higher, you have high blood pressure. The American Academy of Cardiology defines high blood pressure slightly differently. The AAC considers 130/80 mm Hg. or greater (either number) stage 1 hypertension. Stage 2 hypertension is considered 140/90 mm Hg. or greater. If you have high blood pressure you are at risk of developing life threatening diseases like stroke and heart attack.REFERENCE: CDC. High Blood Pressure. Updated: Nov 13, 2017.
Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
Congestive heart failure (CHF) refers to a condition in which the heart loses the ability to function properly. Heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, myocarditis, and cardiomyopathies are just a few potential causes of congestive heart failure. Signs and symptoms of congestive heart failure may include fatigue, breathlessness, palpitations, angina, and edema. Physical examination, patient history, blood tests, and imaging tests are used to diagnose congestive heart failure. Treatment of heart failure consists of lifestyle modification and taking medications to decrease fluid in the body and ease the strain on the heart. The prognosis of a patient with congestive heart failure depends on the stage of the heart failure and the overall condition of the individual.
Heart Attack (Myocardial Infarction)
A heart attack happens when a blood clot completely obstructs a coronary artery supplying blood to the heart muscle. A heart attack can cause chest pain, heart failure, and electrical instability of the heart.
High Blood Pressure Treatment (Natural Home Remedies, Diet, Medications)
High blood pressure (hypertension) means high pressure (tension) in the arteries. Treatment for high blood pressure include lifestyle modifications (alcohol, smoking, coffee, salt, diet, exercise), drugs and medications such as ACE inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, beta blockers, diuretics, calcium channel blockers (CCBs), alpha blockers, clonidine, minoxidil, and Exforge.
Heart failure (congestive) is caused by many conditions including coronary artery disease, heart attack, cardiomyopathy, and conditions that overwork the heart. Symptoms of heart failure include congested lungs, fluid and water retention, dizziness, fatigue and weakness, and rapid or irregular heartbeats. There are two types of congestive heart failure, systolic or left-sided heart failure; and diastolic or right-sided heart failure. Treatment, prognosis, and life-expectancy for a person with congestive heart failure depends upon the stage of the disease.
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
FDA Press Release July 13, 2018. FDA announces voluntary recall of several medicines containing valsartan following detection of an impurity.