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Benazepril and Hydrochlorothiazide

IMPORTANT WARNING:

Do not take benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide, call your doctor immediately.

Why is this medication prescribed?

The combination of benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide is used to treat high blood pressure and fluid retention caused by various conditions, including heart disease. Benazepril decreases certain chemicals that tighten the blood vessels, so blood flows more smoothly and the heart can pump blood more efficiently. Hydrochlorothiazide, a 'water pill,' causes the kidneys to get rid of unneeded water and salt from the body into the urine.

This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

How should this medicine be used?

The combination of benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once a day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.

This medication controls high blood pressure but does not cure it. Continue to take benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide even if you feel well. Do not stop taking benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide without talking to your doctor.

What special precautions should I follow?

Before taking benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to benazepril, hydrochlorothiazide, sulfa drugs, or any other drugs.
  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, or Nuprin) or naproxen (Aleve); corticosteroids (e.g., prednisone); lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid); medications for diabetes; other diuretics ('water pills'); other medications for high blood pressure; potassium or calcium supplements; probenecid (Benemid); and vitamins. If you also are taking cholestyramine (Questran, Prevalite) or colestipol (Colestid), take it at least 2 hours before or 1 hour after taking benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide.
  • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had asthma; diabetes; gout; high cholesterol; lupus; or heart, kidney, liver, thyroid, or parathyroid disease.
  • if you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide.
  • you should know that this drug may make you drowsy. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide will affect you.
  • remember that alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this drug.
  • plan to avoid unnecessary or prolonged exposure to sunlight and to wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide may make your skin sensitive to sunlight.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide may cause an upset stomach. Take benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide with food or milk.

Talk to your doctor before using salt substitutes containing potassium. If your doctor prescribes a low-salt or low-sodium diet, or an exercise program, follow these directions carefully.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Although side effects from benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide are not common, they can occur. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • headache
  • dizziness or lightheadedness
  • muscle weakness or cramping
  • numbing or tingling in the hands or feet
  • cough
  • upset stomach
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • loss of appetite
  • excessive tiredness

If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:

  • swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue, arms, or legs
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • chest pain
  • fast heartbeat
  • fainting
  • fever
  • sore throat
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • rash
  • yellowing of the skin or eyes

Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.

In case of emergency/overdose

In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.

What other information should I know?

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your blood pressure should be checked regularly to determine your response to benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide. Your doctor will also order blood tests to monitor your response to benazepril and hydrochlorothiazide.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

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Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT
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