The combination of captopril and hydrochlorothiazide is used to treat high blood pressure. Captopril is in a class of medications called angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. It works by decreasing certain chemicals that tighten the blood vessels, so blood flows more smoothly. Hydrochlorothiazide is in a class of medications called diuretics (‘water pills’). It works by causing the kidneys to get rid of unneeded water and salt from the body into the urine.
High blood pressure is a common condition, and when not treated it can cause damage to the brain, heart, blood vessels, kidneys, and other parts of the body. Damage to these organs may cause heart disease, a heart attack, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, loss of vision, and other problems. In addition to taking medication, making lifestyle changes will also help to control your blood pressure. These changes include eating a diet that is low in fat and salt, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising at least 30 minutes most days, not smoking, and using alcohol in moderation.
Side Effects Of Captopril And Hydrochlorothiazide
Captopril and hydrochlorothiazide may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- taste changes
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- swelling of the face, throat, tongue, lips, eyes, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
- fever, sore throat, chills, and other signs of infection
- yellowing of the skin or eyes
- dry mouth
- lack of energy
- muscle pains or cramps
- infrequent urination
- upset stomach
- chest pain
- rapid, pounding, or irregular heartbeat
Captopril and hydrochlorothiazide may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Warnings & Precautions
Before taking captopril and hydrochlorothiazide:
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to captopril (Capoten); hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ; Microzide, Oretic); angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors such as benazepril (Lotensin, in Lotrel), enalapril (Vasotec, in Vaseretic), fosinopril (Monopril), lisinopril (in Prinzide, in Zestoretic), moexipril (Univasc, in Uniretic), perindopril (Aceon), quinapril (Accupril, in Accuretic, in Quinaretic), ramipril (Altace), and trandolapril (Mavik, in Tarka); sulfa drugs; any other medications; or any of the ingredients in captopril and hydrochlorothiazide tablets. Ask your pharmacist for a list of the ingredients.
- tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking valsartan and sacubitril (Entresto) or if you have stopped taking it within the last 36 hours. Your doctor will probably tell you not to take captopril and hydrochlorothiazide, if you are also taking valsartan and sacubitril. Also, tell your doctor if you have diabetes and you are taking aliskiren (Tekturna, in Amturnide, in Tekamlo, in Tekturna HCT). Your doctor will probably tell you not to take captopril and hydrochlorothiazide if you have diabetes and you are also taking aliskiren.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products you are taking. Be sure to mention any of the following: amphotericin B (Ambisome, Amphotec, others); anticoagulants (‘blood thinners’) such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven); aspirin and other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) such as indomethacin (Indocin, Tivorbex); calcium supplements; cancer chemotherapy medications; cholestyramine (Prevalite); colestipol (Colestid); digoxin (Lanoxin); insulin or oral medications for diabetes; lithium (Lithobid); medications for gout such as probenecid (Probalan) ; medications that suppress the immune system such as methenamine (Hiprex, Urex); monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors such as phenelzine (Nardil) and tranylcypromine (Parnate); nitrates such as isosorbide dinitrate (Isordil, in Bidil), isosorbide mononitrate (Monoket), and nitroglycerin (Nitro-Dur, Nitrostat, others); oral steroids such as dexamethasone , methylprednisolone (Medrol), and prednisone (Rayos); other diuretics; other medications for high blood pressure; pain medications; phenobarbital (Luminal); and potassium supplements. Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had lupus; scleroderma (a condition in which extra tissue grows on the skin and some organs); heart failure; diabetes; allergy; asthma; or liver or kidney disease.
- tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding.
- if you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking captopril and hydrochlorothiazide.
- ask your doctor about the safe use of alcoholic beverages while you are taking captopril and hydrochlorothiazide. Alcohol can worsen the side effects of captopril and hydrochlorothiazide.
- you should know that diarrhea, vomiting, not drinking enough fluids, and sweating a lot can cause a drop in blood pressure, which may cause lightheadedness and fainting.
Dosage Of Captopril And Hydrochlorothiazide
The combination of captopril and hydrochlorothiazide comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken once or twice a day on an empty stomach, 1 hour before meals. To help you remember to take captopril and hydrochlorothiazide, take it around the same time(s) every day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take captopril and hydrochlorothiazide exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Your doctor may start you on a low dose of captopril and hydrochlorothiazide and gradually increase your dose, not more than once every 6 to 8 weeks.
Captopril and hydrochlorothiazide control high blood pressure but does not cure it. Continue to take captopril and hydrochlorothiazide even if you feel well. Do not stop taking captopril and hydrochlorothiazide without talking to your doctor.
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your blood pressure should be checked regularly to determine your response to captopril and hydrochlorothiazide. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your body’s response to captopril and hydrochlorothiazide.
Before having any laboratory test, tell your doctor and the laboratory personnel that you are taking captopril and hydrochlorothiazide.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
All information has been provided courtesy of MedLinePlus from the National Library of Medicine and from the FDA.