IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
VALSARTAN/HYDROCHLOROTHIAZIDE - ORAL
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Diovan HCT
WARNING : Valsartan can cause serious (possibly fatal) harm to an unborn baby if used during pregnancy. It is important to prevent pregnancy while taking this medication. Consult your doctor for more details and to discuss the use of reliable forms of birth control while taking this medication. If you are planning pregnancy, become pregnant, or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor right away.
USES: This drug is used to treat high blood pressure. Lowering high blood pressure helps prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems. This product contains two medications: valsartan and hydrochlorothiazide. Valsartan is an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB) and works by relaxing blood vessels so that blood can flow more easily. Hydrochlorothiazide is a "water pill" (diuretic) that causes you to make more urine, which helps your body get rid of extra salt and water.Top
HOW TO USE: Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your pharmacist before you start taking this medication and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. Take this medication by mouth with or without food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily. If this medication causes you to urinate more frequently, it is best to take it at least 4 hours before your bedtime to prevent having to get up to urinate. If you also take certain drugs to lower your cholesterol (bile acid-binding resins such as cholestyramine or colestipol), take this product at least 4 hours before or at least 4 to 6 hours after these medications. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day. Keep taking this medication even if you feel well. Most people with high blood pressure do not feel sick. Tell your doctor if you do not get better or if you get worse (for example, your blood pressure readings remain high or increase).Top
SIDE EFFECTS: Dizziness or lightheadedness may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. If either of these effects lasts or gets worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. To reduce the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position. Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects. This product may cause a loss of too much body water (dehydration) and salt/minerals. Tell your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of dehydration or mineral loss, including: extreme thirst, very dry mouth, muscle cramps/weakness, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat, confusion. Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: fainting, decrease in vision, eye pain, symptoms of a high potassium blood level (such as muscle weakness, slow/irregular heartbeat), signs of kidney problems (such as change in the amount of urine). A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing. This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch. In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.Top
PRECAUTIONS: Before taking this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to valsartan or hydrochlorothiazide; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details. Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: gout, kidney disease, liver disease, lupus, loss of too much body water and minerals (dehydration). This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting can increase the risk for lightheadedness or a serious loss of body water (dehydration). Report prolonged diarrhea or vomiting to your doctor. To prevent dehydration, drink plenty of fluids unless your doctor directs you otherwise. If you have diabetes, this product may affect your blood sugar. Check your blood sugar regularly as directed and share the results with your doctor. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medication, exercise program, or diet. This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Tell your doctor right away if you get sunburned or have skin blisters/redness. This product may affect your potassium levels. Before using potassium supplements or salt substitutes that contain potassium, consult your doctor or pharmacist. Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products). Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially dizziness and change in the amount of urine (kidney problems). This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby. Consult your doctor for more details. (See also Warning section.) It is unknown if valsartan passes into breast milk. Hydrochlorothiazide passes into breast milk, but is unlikely to harm a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.Top
DRUG INTERACTIONS: See also How to Use and Precautions sections. Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval. Some products that may interact with this drug include: aliskiren, dofetilide, lithium, drugs that may increase the level of potassium in the blood (such as ACE inhibitors including benazepril/lisinopril, birth control pills containing drospirenone). Some products have ingredients that could raise your blood pressure or worsen your heart failure. Tell your pharmacist what products you are using, and ask how to use them safely (especially cough-and-cold products, diet aids, or NSAIDs such as ibuprofen/naproxen). This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including parathyroid function), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.Top
OVERDOSE: If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe dizziness, fainting.Top
NOTES: Do not share this medication with others. Lifestyle changes that may help this medication work better include exercising, stopping smoking, and eating a low-cholesterol/low-fat diet. Consult your doctor for more details. Lab and/or medical tests (such as kidney function tests, potassium levels) should be done while you are taking this product. Keep all medical and lab appointments. Check your blood pressure regularly while taking this medication. Learn how to monitor your own blood pressure, and share the results with your doctor.Top
MISSED DOSE: If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.Top
STORAGE: Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets. Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.Top
Information last revised October 2016. Copyright(c) 2016 First Databank, Inc.