Blood Pressure Home > Avalide Warnings and Precautions

Specific Precautions and Warnings for Avalide

Some warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking this blood pressure medicine include the following:
  • Avalide may cause extremely low blood pressure, especially when you first start taking it. Very low blood pressure is more likely to occur in people who are on a low-salt diet, taking high doses of diuretics ("water pills"), dehydrated (which can happen when you are sick with nausea and vomiting), or on kidney dialysis. If you become dizzy, lightheaded, or faint while taking Avalide, lie down and contact your healthcare provider.
  • Avalide can affect blood electrolyte levels, including sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium. Therefore, your healthcare provider may regularly check your electrolyte levels with a blood test while you take Avalide. If you notice any symptoms of an electrolyte imbalance, contact your healthcare provider. Such symptoms may include:
    • Dry mouth
    • Feeling thirsty
    • Feeling weak
    • Extreme tiredness
    • Restlessness
    • Confusion
    • Low blood pressure, which may cause dizziness and lightheadedness
    • Muscle tiredness, pains, or cramps
    • Nausea and vomiting
    • Seizures
    • Decrease in urination
    • Increased heart rate (tachycardia).
  • Drugs that contain hydrochlorothiazide (including this medication) can sometimes cause a potentially dangerous eye reaction (a particularly dangerous type of glaucoma). This reaction usually occurs within days to weeks of starting the drug. 
Because this reaction can permanently damage vision, let your healthcare provider know right away if you develop vision changes and/or eye pain. The main treatment for this reaction is to stop taking this medication, although other treatment (including surgery) may sometimes be necessary.
  • This medication may cause a decrease in kidney function, especially in people who are elderly, have kidney disease, have severe congestive heart failure (CHF), or are taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or diuretics (water pills). Your healthcare provider may choose to monitor your kidney function with a blood test while you are taking it. 
Contact your healthcare provider if you notice a decrease in urination or swelling in your hands, legs, ankles, or feet, which can be signs of kidney problems.
  • Avalide may worsen systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus or SLE for short) or, in some cases, may even cause the condition. It may also cause or worsen gout, a form of arthritis characterized by high uric acid levels.
  • Hydrochlorothiazide, one of the drugs in Avalide, may increase blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. If you have diabetes, your healthcare provider may need to adjust the dosages of your diabetes medications. In rare cases, Avalide may cause diabetes in people who do not have the condition.
  • Because it contains hydrochlorothiazide, Avalide is more likely than other drugs to cause allergic reactions. This is more common in people with a history of allergies or asthma, but can occur in anyone. Seek immediate medical attention if you develop signs of an allergic reaction, including hives, an unexplained rash, difficulty breathing, or swelling of the face or throat.
  • Because it contains hydrochlorothiazide, Avalide may increase blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Your healthcare provider may choose to monitor your cholesterol and triglyceride levels with a simple blood test when you take this medication.
  • Avalide is a pregnancy Category D medication. This means that it may not be safe for use during pregnancy (see Avalide and Pregnancy).
  • Hydrochlorothiazide, one of the drugs in Avalide, passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking this medication (see Avalide and Breastfeeding).
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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