What Are the Side Effects of Triam Hctz?

Written by jennifer s. wright
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What Are the Side Effects of Triam Hctz?
Triam HCTZ is a prescription medication. (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Charles Williams)

Triam HCTZ is the abbreviation for the combination of two diuretic medications called triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide. This medication is prescribed to treat high blood pressure and fluid build-up in the body called oedema. Brand names of this medication are Maxzide and Dyazide. Triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide work by releasing water from the body through urination. This medication also reduces the amount of potassium lost from the body in the urine. Potassium is a mineral needed by the body for normal heart activity, body growth and metabolism. As with most medications, triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide may cause unwanted side effects.

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Common Side Effects

Side effects of triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide include frequent urination, dizziness, lightheadedness, blurred vision, headache. loss of appetite, upset stomach, decreased appetite, diarrhoea and constipation. This medication may also make your skin sensitive to sunlight. Drinking alcohol with this medication can intensify dizziness and lightheadedness. Contact your physician if the side effects of this medication become bothersome or get worse.

Serious Side Effects

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide may cause serious side effects such as pain in the upper stomach area, stomach swelling or tenderness, unusual bleeding or bruising, yellowing of the skin or eyes, fever, muscle cramps or weakness, inability to move legs or arms, and feelings of numbness, burning, tingling or creeping on the skin. If you experience these side effects contact your physician immediately, or if the symptoms are severe, seek emergency medical attention.

Complications

Triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide may cause dehydration. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, symptoms of dehydration include dry mouth, dark-coloured urine, decreased urine production, inability to produce tears, a sunken appearance of the eyes, tiredness, and lack of energy. Dehydration can become a life-threatening condition if not treated.

Risks

Because this medication decreases potassium loss, potassium may build up in the blood. This condition, called hyperkalemia, can occur due to eating a diet high in potassium-rich foods. Symptoms of a high potassium level include an irregular heartbeat, nausea and a slow or weak pulse. Potassium-rich foods include citrus fruits, bananas, cantaloupe, kiwi, apricots, raisins and prunes.

Allergic Reaction

An allergic reaction to triamterene and hydrochlorothiazide can include symptoms such as a rash, hives, itching, severe dizziness, trouble breathing or swallowing, and swelling of the face, tongue or throat. An allergic reaction is a serious medical emergency and requires prompt treatment.

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