Hydrochlorothiazide for Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)

Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) is commonly used for the treatment of high blood pressure. Healthcare providers also often recommend hydrochlorothiazide for congestive heart failure (CHF), specifically to treat water retention associated with the condition.
Congestive heart failure is a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood throughout the body. It does not mean that your heart has stopped or is about to stop working. It means that your heart is not able to pump blood the way that it should. This can lead to symptoms of CHF that include shortness of breath; swelling of the feet, ankles, or lower legs; and rapid weight gain (see Symptoms of Congestive Heart Failure for more information).
Hydrochlorothiazide can help with water retention by helping the body get rid of the extra fluid. It is approved to treat water retention (edema) when used along with other medications, including other congestive heart failure medications. You cannot use hydrochlorothiazide to cure congestive heart failure.
(For more information on how this drug works for congestive heart failure, click Hydrochlorothiazide. This article also offers information on when and how to take this medication, what side effects may occur, and what you should discuss with your healthcare provider before starting treatment.)
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