Generic Name: hydrochlorothiazide and olmesartan (HYE droe KLOR oh THYE a zide and ol me SAR tan)Brand Names: Benicar HCT
Hydrochlorothiazide is a thiazide diuretic (water pill) that helps prevent your body from absorbing too much salt, which can cause fluid retention.
Olmesartan is in a group of drugs called angiotensin II receptor antagonists. Olmesartan keeps blood vessels from narrowing, which lowers blood pressure and improves blood flow.
The combination of olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension).
Olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.What is the most important information I should know about olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide?You should not use this medication if you are allergic to olmesartan or hydrochlorothiazide (Carozide, Diaqua, Ezide HCTZ, HydroDiuril, Microzide, and others), or if you are unable to urinate. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are pregnant. Olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide may cause injury and even death to the unborn baby if you take it during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. Use an effective form of birth control. Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment. Avoid drinking alcohol. It can lower your blood pressure and may increase some of the side effects of olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide. In rare cases, hydrochlorothiazide and olmesartan can cause a condition that results in the breakdown of skeletal muscle tissue, leading to kidney failure. Call your doctor right away if you have muscle pain, tenderness, or weakness especially if you also have fever, nausea or vomiting, and dark colored urine.What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide?You should not use this medication if you are allergic to olmesartan or hydrochlorothiazide (Carozide, Diaqua, Ezide HCTZ, HydroDiuril, Microzide, and others), or if you are unable to urinate.
Before using olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:
congestive heart failure;
low or high levels of potassium in your blood;
asthma or allergies;
high cholesterol or triglyceride levels;
an allergy to sulfa drugs.
If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take this medication.FDA pregnancy category D. This medication can cause harm to an unborn baby. Olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide may cause injury and even death to the unborn baby if you take it during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy. Do not use olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide without your doctor's consent if you are pregnant. Use an effective form of birth control. Stop using this medication and tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide passes into breast milk. Do not take this medication without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results from this medication.Take this medication with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.
To be sure this medication is helping your condition, your blood pressure will need to be checked on a regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled visits to your doctor.Call your doctor if you have ongoing vomiting or diarrhea, or if you are sweating more than usual. You can easily become dehydrated while taking this medication, which can lead to severely low blood pressure or a serious electrolyte imbalance.
Hydrochlorothiazide can interfere with the results of a thyroid test. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using this medication.
It may take up to 4 weeks for this medication to control your blood pressure. Keep using this medication even if you feel fine. High blood pressure often has no symptoms.
If you need to have any type of surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.Store olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
See also: Benicar HCT dosage in more detail
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Overdose symptoms may include fast or slow heartbeat, feeling light-headed, or fainting.
Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated during exercise and in hot weather. Follow your doctor's instructions about the type and amount of liquids you should drink. In some cases, drinking too much liquid can be as unsafe as not drinking enough.Do not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes while you are taking olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide, unless your doctor has told you to.
feeling like you might pass out;
chest pain, feeling short of breath, even with mild exertion;
swelling, rapid weight gain;
urinating more or less than usual, or not at all;
jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes); or
dry mouth, increased thirst, drowsiness, restless feeling, confusion, increased urination, fast heart rate, feeling light-headed, fainting, or seizure (convulsions).
Less serious side effects may include:
stomach pain, heartburn, diarrhea;
dizziness, spinning sensation;
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Before taking olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:
any other blood pressure medications;
steroids (prednisone and others);
lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid);
cholestyramine (Prevalite, Questran) or colestipol (Colestid);
insulin or diabetes medicine you take by mouth;
a barbiturate such as amobarbital (Amytal), butabarbital (Butisol), mephobarbital (Mebaral), secobarbital (Seconal), or phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton);
any other diuretics, such as amiloride (Midamor), bumetanide (Bumex), chlorthalidone (Hygroton, Thalitone), ethacrynic acid (Edecrin), furosemide (Lasix), hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ, HydroDiuril), indapamide (Lozol), metolazone (Mykrox, Zarxolyn), spironolactone (Aldactone), triamterene (Dyrenium, Maxzide, Dyazide), torsemide (Demadex), and others;
aspirin or other NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil), etodolac (Lodine), indomethacin (Indocin), ketoprofen (Orudis), naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), and others;
a muscle relaxer such as baclofen (Lioresal), carisoprodol (Soma), cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), dantrolene (Dantrium), metaxalone (Skelaxin), or methocarbamol (Robaxin), orphenadrine (Norflex), or tizanidine (Zanaflex); or
a narcotic medication such as hydrocodone (Lortab, Vicodin), meperidine (Demerol), methadone (Methadose), oxycodone (OxyContin), propoxyphene (Darvon, Darvocet), and others.
This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.