Hydrochlorothiazide is a thiazide diuretic (water pill). It is prescribed for excessive fluid retention and edema caused by heart disease, kidney failure, liver cirrhosis, and nephrotic syndrome. Combined with other medications, Hydrochlorothiazide is also used to treat high blood pressure. Hydrochlorothiazide inhibits kidneys' ability to absorb excessive salt, thus reduces water retention in the body.
Hydrochlorothiazide comes in tablets and oral liquid. It may be taken with or without food. Diuretic effect usually occurs in 2 hours, reaches its maximum in 4 hours, and lasts 12 hours. Hydrochlorothiazide can increase the amount of urine produced in the body and make you urinate more often. Therefore, it is recommended to take the dose before 6 pm in order to have undisturbed sleep at night. Hydrochlorothiazide can interact with alcohol and certain medications, and affect your thinking ability. Doctor usually advices to follow calcium-rich diet or take calcium supplements during treatment.