Lasix Generic (Furosemide): All aspects and properties of the “water pill”
Lasix (furosemide) is a fast-acting diuretic drug, which stimulates the removal of excess fluid from the body by producing more urine. This process helps patients get rid of such symptoms as dyspnea, tissue swelling and high blood pressure. The described medication also expands veins and has a hypotensive effect. Furosemide can be prescribed to those, who suffer from:
- Congestive heart failure;
- Liver diseases;
- Acute kidney failure;
- Pulmonary or cerebral edema;
- Arterial hypertension.
How and in what doses can you take Lasix?
When taking furosemide, it is recommended to start with 20-80 mg per day and incrementally adjust the dosage, relying on the strength of the diuretic effect and the patient’s general condition. The maximum daily dose of preparation is 600 mg per day. It may be prescribed in case of a severe swelling or heart failure.
The authentic “water pill” is produced by Sanofi Aventis, a French pharmaceutical company. This medication comes in two dosages of 40 and 500 mg. The first one has a standard concentration of the active component, whereas the second one is more of a last resort.
Lasix can also be found in the form of an oral solution, coming in the only dosage of 10 mg per ml. It is just as effective as pills, but if the doctor prescribes you a high daily dose of furosemide, then you will run out of the oral solution too quickly.
The third form of this drug is a solution for injectable administration. It has the equal dosage of 20 mg of furosemide in a 2 ml ampule. The medication can be administered intramuscularly or intravenously.
Furosemide, the “generic Lasix”, is sold in dosages of 20, 40 and 80 mg per tablet.
Lasix pills should be taken in the morning on an empty stomach, with a drink of water. Oral solution has to be precisely measured before consumption. Intravenously injections should take from 1 to 2 minutes, as the solution must be administered slowly.
What is the average price of Lasix in Canada?
In Canada, you can purchase a medium-sized pack of 40 mg pills for two months for around $60-80, making a single tablet cost about $1. That is not a lot, considering the fact that we are purchasing a brand-name remedy. However, its generic analog, Furosemide, costs just $0.25 per 40 mg pill, which is four times cheaper than Lasix. It’s worth saying that these drugs are almost identical – they possess the same principle of operation, base on the same active ingredient and both have an oval shape and white color. Main advantages of Liasix are its globally recognized name and the availability of 500 mg tablets. Such a dosage facilitates treatment for patients with tough diseases.
A 120-ml bottle of Lasix syrup can be found for $60. This means that each ml contains 10 mg of furosemide and costs $0.5.
Solution for injections is sold to hospitals only, so you won’t be able to purchase it with just having a prescription. Even if you can do injections on your own, it is still safer to rely on qualified specialists, who can estimate the optimal amount of the drug and insert the needle in accordance with all the rules.
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Side effects and contraindications of furosemide
Some frequent problems that patients face while consuming Lasix are:
- Dry mouth;
- Dizziness when trying to stand up abruptly;
- Blurred vision;
Nevertheless, the listed issues should not be the cause for alarm. These downsides can be easily avoided by drinking a lot of water, following a diet high in potassium and carefully observing the recommended dosage. Also, don’t try taking two or more doses at one stroke in order to make up for missed receptions.
Unfortunately, there are several adverse effects of furosemide, the occurrence of which can not be controlled. Those are:
- Appetite loss;
- Urinary retention;
- Itchy skin;
- Ringing in your ears;
- Arterial hypotension;
- Oral / gastric irritation;
- Increased liver enzymes;
- Vomiting or nausea.
Lasix is not recommended to be taken by those patients, who suffer from any of the following diseases:
- Lack of potassium in the blood;
- Hepatic insufficiency;
- Allergy to furosemide;
- Hepatic coma / precoma;
- Inability to pass urine.
This medication should not be taken by women during such periods, as pregnancy, lactation and breastfeeding.
Furosemide is incompatible with other diuretic drugs, aminoglycosides, alcohol, potassium supplementation, chemotherapy medicines, sucralfate, painkillers and antidepressants.
Ways to minimize the risk of the occurrence of side effects
If you are worried about the possible adverse effects that can be faced, and want to make the consumption of Lasix as safe as possible, we would recommend you to adhere to the following recommendations:
- Try to temporarily limit your bad habits (alcohol and smoking) at the time of taking the medication;
- Make slight changes in your diet by adding more fruits and vegetables, as well as considering consuming less sugar and salt. Eat more beans, cereals and nuts, as these products will maintain the level of potassium in your body.
- Exercise regularly in order to reduce blood pressure. Do some weight training, aerobic and stretching exercises. Some breathing techniques will also help bring your pressure back to normal. You should also stay hydrated when exercising throughout the treatment, especially in the summertime.
- Always be aware of your physical condition. Don’t forget to measure your blood pressure and pulse constantly. You can also undergo a full medical check-up during your treatment in order to detect the presence or absence of any adverse effects.
If you’ve started experiencing side effects of the medication, just contact your doctor and describe your problem in detail, so that they can decide whether you should continue taking Lasix or not.