How Does Hydrochlorothiazide Work?

Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) is a medication known to be useful for controlling high blood pressure and treating water retention. But how does hydrochlorothiazide work?
This prescription drug is a diuretic, which is commonly referred to as a "water pill." It works by increasing the amount of salt and water that the kidneys remove from the blood. This extra salt and water is passed out through the urine.
By increasing the amount of water removed from the blood, hydrochlorothiazide causes a decrease in blood volume, which can lower blood pressure. By removing extra water from the body, hydrochlorothiazide also helps decrease swelling and water retention.
(Click What Is Hydrochlorothiazide Used For? for more information on how hydrochlorothiazide works, to learn about the specific effects of this medicine, and to find out if the drug is suitable for children.)
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