What is Furosemide?
It is a loop diuretic, often referred to as a fluid pill or water pill. It acts in the kidney on the Loop of Henle. It prevents the kidney from reabsorbing sodium, potassium and chloride. The body then has to use water to flush out the sodium, potassium and chloride causing a reduction in the amount of water retained in the body.
Uses for Furosemide
It is used to remove excess fluid in the body or a condition called edema. Also, it may be use to treat high blood pressure.
Dosage of Furosemide
The dose will vary depending on the amount of fluid your healthcare provider wants to remove. Dosage generally starts at 20 mg a day and may go up to 80 mg. In rare cases, the dosage may go as high as 600mg a day.
For blood pressure, furosemide is often given twice a day. Doses range form 10 mg twice a day to 40 mg twice a day.
This medication does work best on an empty stomach, but may be taken with food if stomach upset occurs.
Side effects of Furosemide
Common adverse reactions can include: frequent urination, dizziness, nausea and vomiting, muscle cramps, low potassium, low magnesium, low blood pressure, reduced appetite, diarrhea, rash, ringing in the ears, gout, sensitivity to sunlight and others.
Rare and serious side effects can include: very low potassium, hearing impairment, blood disorders, severe allergic reaction, blurred vision, kidney toxicity, severe skin rash, and others
More about Furosemide
It is usually best taken in the morning as frequent urination will occur. Potassium supplementation or a diet high in potassium will most likely be recommended by your doctor, your potassium levels will be monitored. Avoid alcohol. Avoid NSAID pain relievers like ibuprofen and naproxen. Monitoring your weight may be useful to determine levels of excess fluid in your body.
Sunscreen is recommended as you may burn easier than normal with this medication. Watch for dizziness and low blood pressure. If you are diabetic, monitor your blood sugars as this medication may affect glucose levels in the blood.
Always contact your doctor or pharmacist if you feel you may be having side effects of interactions. Check with you healthcare provider before starting or stopping any medication prescription or over-the-counter. Also, check if vitamins or supplements are ok to use with your medications.