If I am pregnant, is it safe to use Microzide?

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It may be risky to take Microzide (hydrochlorothiazide) during pregnancy. The medication -- a diuretic, or water pill -- is used to treat high blood pressure and fluid retention. In animal studies, Microzide didn't harm the developing fetus, but experts know that the drug crosses the placenta and gets into the cord blood. That means there's a risk that your baby might be born with jaundice or other problems.

None of this means that a pregnant woman should never take Microzide; untreated high blood pressure can also be dangerous. But if you're simply retaining fluid -- a common problem in pregnancy -- it's generally best to treat it with simple measures, like elevating the legs, for example. Usually, fluid retention during pregnancy isn't dangerous, although it can be uncomfortable. The use of a diuretic such as Microzide should be considered only if the problem is caused by a medical condition.