FDA Approves Sanofi-Aventis's Lasix

Lasix is a loop diuretic (water pill) that prevents your body from absorbing too much salt, allowing the salt to instead be passed in your urine.

Lasix treats fluid retention (edema) in people with congestive heart failure, liver disease, or a kidney disorder such as nephrotic syndrome. This medication is also used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension).

Lasix is used in the treatment of high blood pressure and other conditions that require the elimination of excess fluid (water) from the body. These conditions include congestive heart failure, cirrhosis of the liver, and kidney disease. When used to treat high blood pressure, Lasix is effective alone or in combination with other high blood pressure medications. Diuretics help your body produce and eliminate more urine, which helps lower blood pressure. Lasix is classified as a "loop diuretic" because of its point of action in the kidneys.

Furosemide is marketed as the brand name product (Lasix®, sanofi-aventis U.S., LLC) and as a generic product from a number of manufacturers. It is available in 20, 40, and 80 mg tablets, 8 mg/mL (40 mg/5 mL) and 10 mg/mL oral solutions, and a 10 mg/mL injection. The typical starting dose for furosemide in infants and children is 1 mg/kg IV or PO given every 6 to 24 hours, with the dosing interval determined by the patient's age, renal function, and clinical status. The recommended maximum single dose is 6 mg/kg. Continuous furosemide infusions typically range from 0.05 to 0.5 mg/kg/hr. The initial dose for furosemide in adults is 20 to 80 mg IV or PO, with subsequent doses administered at 6 to 8 hour intervals, as needed. Maintenance therapy is typically given once or twice daily, with adjustment based on clinical response.

Lasix belongs to a group of medications known as diuretics, or “water pills,” and is used in the treatment of edema and high blood pressure. Lasix works by reducing the amount of sodium and chloride absorbed by the body and increasing the amount of urine needed to remove them. This helps reduce water retention and decrease swelling and edema in some patients. It also reduces fluid circulation in the body and the amount of stress placed on the arteries, resulting in a decrease in blood pressure.