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What is this medication?

Diuretic, Antihypertensive

Chlorthalidone is officially indicated for hypertension, or refractory edema (as an adjunct).  It is also prescribed off-label for prevention of calcium nephrolithiasis.

How does this medication work? 

Chlorthalidone prevents the reabsorption of sodium and chloride in the distal convoluted tubule through inhibition of the Na+/Cl- symporter in the cortical diluting segment of the ascending limb of the loop of Henle. Reduction of sodium reabsorption subsequently reduces extracellular fluid and plasma volume via an osmotic, sodium-driven diuresis.

How should I take this medication? 

Oral: Take 12.5mg-100mg daily divided into one or two daily doses.

Note: Careful standing up too quickly as you may get dizzy.

How to Take: Follow instructions provided by physician/pharmacy label, take consistently at same time each day in the morning with food unless otherwise directed.

What should I watch for while using this medication? 

Before starting Chlorthalidone, make sure your physician is aware of any allergies or medications you currently take.  Chlorthalidone can cause electrolyte disturbances (i.e. hypokalemia, hypochloremic alkalosis, hypomagnesemia, and hyponatremia) and gout.  Chlorthalidone can cause adrenal insufficiency, autosomal-dominant hypoparathyroidism, worsening of diabetes, renal and hepatic function. When using Chlorthalidone, avoid excessive sun exposure or tanning bed usage.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of medication, try to take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, take only that scheduled dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

How should I store this medication?

Keep out of the reach of children at all times. Store at room temperature, 59 to 86° F (15 to 30° C). Protect from light. Keep the container tightly closed. Properly dispose of any unused medication after the expiration date.

What are the possible side effects of using this medication?

Angiitis, orthostatic hypotension, skin photosensitivity, rash, toxic epidermal necrolysis, urticaria, glycosuria, hyperglycemia, hyperuricemia, hypochloremic alkalosis, hypokalemia, hyponatremia, gastrointestinal symptoms such as abdominal cramps, anorexia constipation, diarrhea, gastric irritation, headache, dizziness, restlessness, vertigo, muscle spasm.

Note this is not a complete list of side effects for Chlorthalidone, only common ones.