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Some Lotensin HCT Warnings and Precautions

Some Lotensin HCT warnings and precautions to be aware of include:
 
  • There are a number of medicines that Lotensin HCT can interact with (see Lotensin HCT Drug Interactions).
     
  • Lotensin HCT is more likely than other drugs to cause allergic reactions. For example, there have been reports of severe allergic reactions occurring in people who were taking Lotensin HCT during dialysis. There have also been reports of severe reactions in people getting bee or wasp venom to protect against stings. Finally, people with a history of asthma or allergies are more likely to have an allergic reaction to Lotensin HCT.
Make sure to discuss these risks with your healthcare provider. Also, seek emergency medical attention immediately if you notice things such as hives, an unexplained rash, difficulty breathing, or swelling of the face or throat.
  • Medicines (including Lotensin HCT) that contain an ACE inhibitor may cause swelling (angioedema) of the head and neck, including the tongue, lips, eyes, or throat. This occurs more frequently in African Americans. Seek emergency medical care immediately if you notice any wheezing, swelling in the head or neck area, or if you have difficulty breathing or swallowing.
     
  • In addition to head and neck angioedema, medicines like Lotensin HCT have been known to cause swelling in the intestines. This is known as intestinal angioedema. Symptoms may include stomach pain with or without vomiting. Seek medical attention immediately if you develop any of these symptoms.
     
  • Lotensin HCT may cause extremely low blood pressure in some people. Extremely low blood pressure is more likely to happen when the medicine is first started or the dosage is changed. It is also more likely to happen in people who are taking a diuretic, who are on dialysis, who have congestive heart failure, who have diarrhea or vomiting, or who have excessive sweating. This is why it is important to drink fluids regularly while taking Lotensin HCT. If you have any possible symptoms of low blood pressure, such as dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting, contact your healthcare provider. If you have fainted, stop taking Lotensin HCT until you have talked to your healthcare provider.
Also, make sure not to drive, operate any heavy machinery, or perform any other tasks that require alertness before you know how Lotensin HCT affects you.
  • Lotensin HCT is a pregnancy Category D medicine, meaning that Lotensin HCT poses clear health risks to your unborn child. Let your healthcare provider know if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking Lotensin HCT, contact your healthcare provider immediately (see Lotensin HCT and Pregnancy).
     
  • Medicines (including Lotensin HCT) that contain an ACE inhibitor are known to cause a cough. If a cough becomes bothersome, talk to your healthcare provider about other treatment options for your condition (see Lotensin Cough).
     
  • While taking Lotensin HCT, do not use potassium supplements or salt substitutes with potassium unless you have discussed this with your doctor. This is because in some people taking Lotensin HCT, potassium in the blood can increase or decrease to dangerous levels.
     
  • People on Lotensin HCT can be at an increased risk of infections. Talk to your healthcare provider if you develop any symptoms (such as a sore throat or fever) that could indicate an infection.
     
  • 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.

  • In clinical studies, medicines that contain an ACE inhibitor, including Lotensin HCT, have been known to rarely cause liver failure. Contact your healthcare provider immediately if you notice things such as nausea, tiredness, lethargy, itchy or yellowing skin, abdominal pain, or flu-like symptoms.
     
  • If you have moderate to severe liver disease (such as cirrhosis), your body may metabolize the Lotensin HCT differently than intended. Therefore, your healthcare provider may start you on a lower dose of Lotensin HCT and will monitor your situation more closely, or may recommend another blood pressure medicine altogether.
     
  • Lotensin HCT may affect electrolytes in the blood (including sodium, potassium, magnesium, and chloride). Therefore, your healthcare provider will regularly check these levels. If you notice any symptoms of a possible electrolyte imbalance, contact your healthcare provider. These symptoms may include a dry mouth, increased thirst, weakness, tiredness, restlessness, seizures, confusion, muscle pain or cramps, decrease in urine output, weak or irregular heartbeat, nausea, or vomiting.
     
  • Because of the hydrochlorothiazide, Lotensin HCT is more likely to worsen systemic lupus erythematosus or, in some cases, even cause the condition.
     
  • Because of the hydrochlorothiazide, Lotensin HCT is also known to worsen gout.
     
  • Lotensin HCT may cause high blood sugar (hyperglycemia) in diabetics or, in some cases, even cause diabetes in people without a history of the condition.
     
  • Lotensin HCT may increase levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood.
     
  • If you are nursing, certain parts of Lotensin HCT can pass through your breast milk. Therefore, if you are nursing, talk with your healthcare provider about whether you should stop taking Lotensin HCT or stop breastfeeding.
     
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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