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About furosemide

Furosemide is a type of medicine called a diuretic. It's used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension), heart failure and a build up of fluid in the body (oedema).

It's also sometimes used to help you pee when your kidneys are not working properly.

Diuretics are sometimes called "water tablets" because they make you pee more. This helps get rid of extra fluid in your body.

Furosemide is only available on prescription. It comes as tablets and a liquid that you swallow. It can also be given by injection, but this is usually only done in hospital.

Furosemide sometimes comes mixed with other diuretics, including with:

  • amiloride (called co-amilofruse, Frumil or Frumil LS)
  • spironolactone (called Lasilactone)
  • triamterene (called Frusene)

Key facts

  • You will usually take furosemide once a day in the morning. Some people take it twice a day, once in the morning and again at lunchtime.
  • Furosemide starts to work within 1 hour. Most people need to pee about 30 minutes after taking furosemide, and again within a few hours.
  • It can take furosemide a few weeks to take full effect and start helping with your high blood pressure or oedema.
  • Furosemide does not usually upset your stomach. You can take it with or without food.
  • The main side effect of furosemide is peeing more often than normal. Do not take furosemide after 4pm or you may have to wake in the night to go to the toilet.

Page last reviewed: 21 February 2022
Next review due: 21 February 2025