“Hydrochlorothiazide is used alone or in combination with other medications to treat high blood pressure. Hydrochlorothiazide is used to treat edema (fluid retention; excess fluid held in body tissues) caused by various medical problems, including heart, kidney, and liver disease and to treat edema caused by using certain medications including estrogen and corticosteroids. Hydrochlorothiazide is in a class of medications called diuretics (‘water pills’). It works by causing the kidneys to get rid of unneeded water and salt from the body into the urine.”
—–(2014, The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc)
Hydrochlorothiazide Side Effects:
- frequent urination
- loss of appetite
- hair loss
- dry mouth; thirst; nausea; vomiting; weakness, tiredness; drowsiness; restlessness; confusion; muscle weakness, pain, or cramps; fast heartbeat and other signs of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance
- blisters or peeling skin
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
- fever, sore throat, chills, and other signs of infection
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- ongoing pain that begins in the stomach area, but may spread to the back
- joint pain or swelling
- changes in vision, eye pain, or swelling or redness in or around the eye
Most brands I looked into are combination tablets of Hydrochlorothiazide + 1 of the following: Amlodipine, Valsartan, Hydralazine, Reserpine, Propranolol, Levamlodipine,
or Nifedipine, just to name a few.
“Western medicine puts emphasis on quickly and effectively lowering BP and helps patients reach target BP as soon as possible. But even effective long-term control of BP by western medicine may not fully achieve goals of protecting target organs against damage, because reversing the target organ damage is a long process.” (2015, pg.1-2)
This systematic review article is heavy on scientific jargon and data use, but pay close attention to pages.7,13 and 14 for the conclusions of each study, as well as, page.11-12 for a table showing TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) herbal combinations and side effects reported. Most of the conclusions found were that combination therapy, TCM herbal formulations (capsules, decoctions, tablets, granules) + conventional pharmaceutical use, were significantly more effective in lowering blood pressure (systolic, diastolic, day-time and night time) then conventional treatment on its own. The authors do state though, that due to small sample sizes and the short duration of the studies performed, that more quality and better randomized trials need to be emphasized in future studies in order for TCM formulations to be considered as better alternatives to pharmaceuticals.
Book reference, Herbal suggestions on oedema/edema: So I tried my hardest to find academic articles on the use of herbal medicine for edema or oedema due to systematic factors like hypertension, but I could not find or did not have access to them. Although this is the case, there are many books that have a number of herbal suggestions, including “the way of Chinese Herbs”, by Micheal Tierra, L.Ac., O.M.D. published 1998, which suggests herbs such as: coix, alisma, poria, atractylodes, areca seed, cinnamon twigs, just to name a few, in combination with food therapy (1998, pg.374-375).
Hydrochlorothiazide picture refs: 2011 International Labs, Inc., http://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/archives/fdaDrugInfo.cfm?archiveid=67188
Hydrochlorothiazide uses, side effects, brand combinations: AHFS ® Consumer Medication Information. © 2016. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., https://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/meds/a682571.html
Article: Zhuo, C, Liqiong, W, Guoyan, Y, Hao, X, & Jianping, L 2015, ‘Chinese Herbal Medicine Combined with Conventional Therapy for Blood Pressure Variability in Hypertension Patients: A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials’, Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine (Ecam), pp. 1-16, Alt HealthWatch, EBSCOhost, viewed 31 January 2016.
Book reference, Herbal suggestions on oedema/edema: “the way of Chinese Herbs”, by Micheal Tierra, L.Ac., O.M.D, 1998, pg.374-375, published by POCKET BOOKS, Simon & Schuster Inc. 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York.