Diovan HCT is prescribed to control high blood pressure in adults. The drug combines two different medications. As a result, it causes a greater drop in blood pressure than when either medicine is used alone. Diovan HCT can decrease the risk of developing health problems, such as a heart attack or stroke, caused by long-term high blood pressure. The medication comes in tablet form and is taken once daily.
Diovan HCT is manufactured by Novartis Pharmaceuticals.
How Does Diovan HCT Work?
Diovan HCT is a combination of two medicines -- Diovan® and hydrochlorothiazide. Diovan is a newer type of blood pressure medicine known as an angiotensin II receptor blocker, or ARB for short. As the name implies, Diovan blocks angiotensin II receptors. This decreases the effectiveness of a chemical known as angiotensin II, which normally causes blood vessels to narrow (constrict). By blocking the effects of angiotensin II, Diovan causes blood vessels to relax.
Hydrochlorothiazide is a diuretic, which is commonly referred to as a "water pill." It works by increasing the amount of salt and water 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.
Because of its combined effects, Diovan HCT causes a greater drop in blood pressure than when either medicine is used alone.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed October 4, 2012.
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