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Atenolol/ chlorthalidone

Generic Name: atenolol/chlorthalidone (a-TEN-oh-lol/klor-THAL-i-done)
Brand Name: Tenoretic

Atenolol/ chlorthalidone is used for:

Treating high blood pressure.

Atenolol/chlorthalidone is a beta-blocker and diuretic combination. It works by interfering with certain body chemicals that cause the heart to beat with less force and pump out less blood. This allows the heart to beat more slowly and regularly. By blocking these chemicals, blood vessels are relaxed and widened, allowing blood pressure to decrease. The diuretic works by causing the kidney to eliminate larger-than-normal amounts of water.

Do NOT use atenolol/ chlorthalidone if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in atenolol/chlorthalidone or to any other sulfonamide, such as acetazolamide, celecoxib, hydrochlorothiazide, glyburide, probenecid, sulfamethoxazole, or zonisamide
  • you have congestive heart failure that has not been treated, a very slow heartbeat, or certain types of irregular heartbeat (eg, moderate to severe heart block)
  • you are unable to urinate
  • you are taking mibefradil

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using atenolol/ chlorthalidone:

Some medical conditions may interact with atenolol/chlorthalidone. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have an untreated adrenal gland tumor, diabetes, gout, liver problems, an overactive thyroid, or systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE; lupus)
  • if you have a history of severe allergic reactions to allergens, asthma, chronic bronchitis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, emphysema, or other lung disease; congestive heart failure, slow heartbeat, heart rhythm problems, or narrowing of blood vessels of the legs, arms, stomach, or kidneys; kidney problems; or low blood potassium or low blood sodium
  • if you are scheduled to have surgery or to receive anesthesia

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with atenolol/chlorthalidone. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Antiarrhythmics (eg, amiodarone, disopyramide, lidocaine, quinidine), bupivacaine, calcium channel blockers (eg, verapamil), digitalis (eg, digoxin), flecainide, ketanserin, mefloquine, or mibefradil because potentially life-threatening toxic effects on the heart may occur
  • Clonidine because excessive increases in blood pressure may occur, especially when stopping clonidine
  • Indomethacin or stimulants (eg, pseudophedrine) because they may decrease atenolol/chlorthalidone's effectiveness
  • Alpha-blockers (eg, doxazosin), diazoxide, lithium, or reserpine because the risk of their side effects may be increased by atenolol/chlorthalidone

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if atenolol/chlorthalidone may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use atenolol/ chlorthalidone:

Use atenolol/chlorthalidone as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take atenolol/chlorthalidone by mouth with or without food.
  • Taking atenolol/chlorthalidone at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
  • Continue to use atenolol/chlorthalidone even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone may increase the amount of urine or cause you to urinate more often when you first start taking it. To keep this from disturbing your sleep, try to take your dose before 6 pm.
  • If you miss a dose of atenolol/chlorthalidone, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use atenolol/chlorthalidone.

Important safety information:

  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone may cause drowsiness, dizziness, or lightheadedness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use atenolol/chlorthalidone with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone may cause dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting; alcohol, hot weather, exercise, or fever may increase these effects. To prevent them, sit up or stand slowly, especially in the morning. Sit or lie down at the first sign of any of these effects.
  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone may cause you to become sunburned more easily. Avoid the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to atenolol/chlorthalidone. Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for more than a short time.
  • Patients who take medicine for high blood pressure often feel tired or run down for a few weeks after starting treatment. Be sure to take your medicine even if you may not feel "normal". Tell your doctor if you develop any new symptoms.
  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone may reduce the amount of blood that flows to your feet and hands. This may cause them to feel cold and make you more sensitive to the cold. Dress warmly in cold weather. Be careful when you are out in the cold for long periods of time. Ask your doctor for more information.
  • If you have a history of any severe allergic reaction, talk with your doctor. You may be at risk for an even more severe allergic reaction if you come into contact with the substance that caused your allergy. Some medicines used to treat severe allergies may also not work as well while you are using atenolol/chlorthalidone.
  • Diabetes patients-Atenolol/chlorthalidone may affect your blood sugar. It may also hide signs of low blood sugar, such as a rapid heartbeat. Be sure to watch for other signs of low blood sugar. Low blood sugar may make you anxious, sweaty, weak, dizzy, drowsy, or faint. It may also make your vision change; give you a headache, chills, or tremors; or make you more hungry. Check blood sugar levels closely. Ask your doctor before you change the dose of your diabetes medicine.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take atenolol/chlorthalidone before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Your doctor may have also prescribed a potassium supplement for you. If so, follow the dosing carefully. Do not start taking additional potassium on your own or change your diet to include more potassium without first checking with your doctor.
  • Do not suddenly stop taking atenolol/chlorthalidone. Sharp chest pain, irregular heartbeat, and sometimes heart attack may occur if you suddenly stop atenolol/chlorthalidone. The risk may be greater if you have certain types of heart disease. Your doctor should slowly lower your dose over several weeks if you need to stop taking it. This should be done even if you only take atenolol/chlorthalidone for high blood pressure. Heart disease is common and you may not know you have it. Limit physical activity while you are lowering your dose. If new or worsened chest pain or other heart problems occur, contact your doctor right away. You may need to start taking atenolol/chlorthalidone again.
  • Lab tests, such as electrolyte and blood pressure monitoring, may be performed while you use atenolol/chlorthalidone. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone should not be used in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: Atenolol/chlorthalidone has been shown to cause harm to the fetus. If you think you may be pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using atenolol/chlorthalidone while you are pregnant. Atenolol/chlorthalidone is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use atenolol/chlorthalidone, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.

Possible side effects of atenolol/ chlorthalidone:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Cold fingers or toes; diarrhea; dizziness; drowsiness; headache; lack of energy; lightheadedness; nausea; tiredness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); blue fingernails, toenails, or palms; decreased urination; fainting; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; increased thirst; mental or mood changes (eg, depression); muscle pain, cramps, or weakness; restlessness; severe joint pain (especially in the big toe); severe or persistent dizziness, drowsiness, or weakness; severe or persistent nausea, vomiting, or dry mouth; sluggishness; swelling of the hands or feet; trouble breathing; unusual bruising or bleeding; yellowing of the skin and eyes.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include confusion; fainting; severe dizziness or weakness; severe nausea; severe tiredness or sluggishness; shortness of breath or trouble breathing; slow or irregular heartbeat; wheezing.

Proper storage of atenolol/chlorthalidone:

Store atenolol/chlorthalidone at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep atenolol/chlorthalidone out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about atenolol/chlorthalidone, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Atenolol/chlorthalidone is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take atenolol/chlorthalidone or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about atenolol/chlorthalidone. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to atenolol/chlorthalidone. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using atenolol/chlorthalidone.

Issue Date: November 5, 2014
Database Edition 14.4.1.002
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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