A healthcare provider may prescribe furosemide to treat fluid retention or high blood pressure. By increasing the amount of salt and water that the kidneys remove from the blood and decreasing blood volume, the drug can effectively control high blood pressure and help with water retention. As with any medication, there are potential side effects of furosemide. Common side effects include low potassium levels, dizziness, and upset stomach.
What Is Furosemide?Furosemide (Lasix®) is a prescription medicine that is used as a diuretic for high blood pressure and fluid retention. It is part of a class of medicines known as diuretics.
Who Makes It?Brand-name furosemide is made by sanofi-aventis U.S., LLC. Generic furosemide is made by several manufacturers.
- Controlling high blood pressure (hypertension)
- Treating water retention (edema) due to several causes, including congestive heart failure, cirrhosis, and kidney failure (renal failure).
How Does Furosemide Work?Furosemide is a diuretic, which is commonly referred to as a "water pill." Specifically, furosemide is known as a "loop diuretic," named after the part of the kidneys that it affects (the loop of Henle). It works by increasing the amount of salt and water the kidneys remove from the blood. This extra salt and water is passed out through the urine. By increasing the amount of water removed from the blood, the medicine causes a decrease in blood volume. Because of this effect, it can lower blood pressure and can also help with water retention.