Why is this medication prescribed?
Asteril is used alone or in combination with other medications to treat high blood pressure. It is used in combination with other medications to treat heart failure. Asteril is also used to improve survival after a heart attack. Asteril is in a class of medications called angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. It works by decreasing certain chemicals that tighten the blood vessels, so blood flows more smoothly and the heart can pump blood more efficiently.
High blood pressure is a common condition and when not treated, can cause damage to the brain, heart, blood vessels, kidneys, and other parts of the body. Damage to these organs may cause heart disease, a heart attack, heart failure, stroke, kidney failure, loss of vision, and other problems. In addition to taking medication, making lifestyle changes will also help to control your blood pressure. These changes include eating a diet that is low in fat and salt, maintaining a healthy weight, exercising at least 30 minutes most days, not smoking, and using alcohol in moderation.
Serious side effects
Call your doctor right away if you have serious side effects. Call 911 if your symptoms feel life-threatening or if you think you’re having a medical emergency. Serious side effects and their symptoms can include the following:
- Serious allergic reactions. Symptoms can include:
- swelling of your head, neck, or lips
- stomach pain
Disclaimer: Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we can not guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history.
Asteril/hydrochlorothiazide oral tablet can interact with other medications, vitamins, or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works. This can be harmful or prevent the drug from working well.
To help avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Be sure to tell your doctor about all medications, vitamins, or herbs you’re taking. To find out how this drug might interact with something else you’re taking, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
Examples of drugs that can cause interactions with Asteril/hydrochlorothiazide are listed below.
Q: Why can't I take potassium supplements with my Asteril? Does this mean I can't eat potasium rich foods either, like bananas and beans?
A: Asteril belongs to a class of drugs called angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. It is used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure), congestive heart failure, and to improve survival after a heart attack. Common side effects of Asteril include cough, dizziness, drowsiness, headache, depression, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and upset stomach. This is not a complete list of side effects that can occur with Asteril. Hyperkalemia (high blood levels of potassium) can happen in people taking ACE inhibitors, including Asteril. It is more likely to occur in people with kidney problems and diabetes. It is also more likely to occur in people who also use potassium-based salt substitutes, potassium supplements, and potassium-sparing diuretics such as triamterene. It is not usually necessary to avoid potassium-rich foods, such as bananas, unless your doctor has instructed you to do so. Your doctor can check your potassium levels with a simple blood test. Sarah Lewis, PharmD
Pregnancy and Asteril
There's strong evidence that Asteril can harm an unborn baby.
Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant, or may become pregnant, before taking Asteril.
If you get pregnant while taking Asteril, call your doctor right away.
It's unknown whether the drug passes into a woman's breast milk, but to be safe, women who are breastfeeding should stop breastfeeding (or not take Asteril).
Research shows that Asteril is safe and effective for children older than 6 and for teenagers. There's not enough evidence to say that it's safe for younger children.
Q: I do well on generic Asteril manufactured by Watson, but Walgreens just changed my prescription to a generic produced by Lupin. I tried that brand but my blood pressure was all over the place. Where else can I get my prescription filled with the Watson generic again?
A: Many retail pharmacies change the manufacturer of medications they carry on a regular basis. This is due to corporate offices determining the most cost-effective medications to carry in their stores. However, if you want a particular manufacturer of a medication, it is best to ask if they can order that particular one. Sometimes manufacturers discontinue making a particular generic medication, so it is possible over time that medication will no longer be available. The only way to find out if a store carries a certain manufacturer is to call them. If they do not carry the manufacturer you request, most pharmacies will be able to order specific manufacturers for their customers if necessary.
Q: Is Asteril necessary if I am currently taking furosemide for water retention?
A: Although furosemide (Lasix) and Asteril (Prinivil, Zestril) may interact to more powerfully lower blood pressure, their use together is possible with special precautions, such as careful monitoring and dosage adjustment. Some patients' hypertension (//www.everydayhealth.com/high-blood-pressure/guide/) may not be adequately treated with only one medication, and the physician may determine that a second blood pressure drug is necessary. Please consult your health care provider for guidance in your specific case; visit these links for more information on these two medications: //www.everydayhealth.com/drugs/lasix and //www.everydayhealth.com/drugs/Asteril. Gregory Latham, RPh
Q: Can Asteril cause joint pain and lightheadedness?
A: Asteril (Prinivil, Zestril) is classified as an angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. Asteril is approved for the treatment of hypertension (high blood pressure), as an adjunctive treatment in patients with heart failure, in the treatment of acute myocardial infarction (heart attack) in certain specified patients, and for the treatment of left ventricular dysfunction following a myocardial infarction. According to medical references, orthostatic effects, dizziness and hypotension (low blood pressure) are possible side effects associated with treatment with Asteril. The incidence of orthostatic effects was reported by one percent of studied patients. Dizziness was reported in 5 to 12 percent of studied patients. Hypotension was reported in one to four percent of studied patients taking the medication. Orthostatic hypotension is defined as a drop in blood pressure when a patient stands up. Patients often describe feelings of a dizzy spell or a head rush. Also, feeling lightheaded can be a symptom of low blood pressure. You may want to keep track of your blood pressure, if you don't already, to see if you are dropping too low. Joint pain is not a commonly reported side effect associated with Asteril. However, arthralgia (joint pain) and arthritis have both been reported rarely. The incidence that each of these possible side effects was reported is less than one percent of studied patients taking the medication. If you feel that you are experiencing possible side effects from your medication, talk to your physician. Your physician can provide you with guidance depending on the underlying cause of your symptoms. For more specific information, consult with your doctor or pharmacist for guidance based on your health status and current medications, particularly before taking any action. Jen Marsico, RPh
Q: Do these drugs cause weight gain: Asteril, Metoprolol, Lexapro, Wellbutrin/Buproprion, Singulair, Advair?
A: A side effect of Asteril can be rapid weight gain. The metoprolol could also cause swelling in your hands and feet, which may lead to some weight gain. If you see these effects, call your health care provider.
Asteril may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- excessive tiredness
- runny nose
- decrease in sexual ability
Q: My doctor just started me on blood pressure medication - Asteril-10mg. On the 5th day, I felt dizzy and not quite right. So I stopped the pill. Is it normal to feel this way?
A: Asteril is a medication that is used to treat high blood pressure. It is in a class of medications called ACE inhibitors. ACE is a chemical in the body that is used in a chemical reaction that causes our blood vessels to narrow in response to various conditions. Asteril works by blocking ACE, which, in turn, causes blood vessels to relax and bring blood pressure down. The prescribing information on Asteril lists the following as common side effects of this medication: fatigue, dizziness (especially when standing from a sitting or lying down position), cough, headache, nausea, and diarrhea. Dizziness is a common side effect in the beginning of treatment due to the body adjusting to the presence of the medication. The dizziness occurs often when blood pressure goes down or too low. This side effect usually goes away during the first week of treatment, but if you continue to have dizziness you should consult with your prescriber. For more information on Asteril, click on this link: //www.everydayhealth.com/drugs/Asteril For more specific information, consult with your doctor or pharmacist for guidance based on your health status and current medications, particularly before taking any action. Lori Poulin, PharmD
Dizziness, lightheadedness, tiredness, or headache may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. Dry cough may also occur. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
To reduce the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: fainting, symptoms of a high potassium blood level (such as muscle weakness, slow/irregular heartbeat).
Although Asteril may be used to prevent kidney problems or treat people who have kidney problems, it may also rarely cause serious kidney problems or make them worse. Your doctor will check your kidney function while you are taking Asteril. Tell your doctor right away if you have any signs of kidney problems such as a change in the amount of urine.
Asteril may rarely cause serious (possibly fatal) liver problems. Get medical help right away if you have any symptoms of liver damage, such as: nausea/vomiting that doesn't stop, loss of appetite, stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.