Compare Norvasc vs. Hydrochlorothiazide

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.


(Hydrochlorothiazide )

Lowers blood pressure. Norvasc (Amlodipine) works well to lower blood pressure and prevent chest pain. You can't miss doses, and you might get persistent swelling.Lowers blood pressure. Removes extra water from your body. Microzide (Hydrochlorothiazide (Hctz)) is a well-tolerated water pill that's often the first-choice treatment for mild high blood pressure.
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Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
Reviews for Norvasc (Amlodipine)
of people say Norvasc (Amlodipine) is worth it
say it works well
say it's a big hassle
435 reviews
Reviews for Microzide (Hydrochlorothiazide (Hctz))
12% vs. Norvasc (Amlodipine)
19% vs. Norvasc (Amlodipine)
1% vs. Norvasc (Amlodipine)
137 reviews
Side effects
  • Swelling due to excess fluid 10%
  • Fatigue 2%
  • Nausea 1%
  • Dizziness 1%
More Norvasc side effects »

The Hydrochlorothiazide FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Hydrochlorothiazide side effects »
How it works
Norvasc (Amlodipine) is a calcium channel blocker. It lowers blood pressure by slowing your heart rate and relaxing your blood vessels. Your heart gets more oxygen and doesn't have to work as hard to pump, which can relieve chest pain.Microzide (Hydrochlorothiazide (Hctz)) is a thiazide diuretic (water pill). It works in the kidneys to make you urinate more, which removes extra water and certain electrolytes. This lowers blood pressure and swelling.
Type of medication
Calcium channel blocker
Prescription only
Prescription only
Available as
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for (click to learn more)
Risk factors for serious side effects
  • Age 65 years or older
  • History of heart problems
  • Liver disease
  • History of blood vessel disease
  • History of heart failure
  • History of kidney disease
  • Obesity
Detailed Norvasc (Amlodipine) risks & warnings »
  • Current electrolyte imbalance
  • History of sulfa allergies
  • History of gout
  • Current kidney problems
    Detailed Microzide (Hydrochlorothiazide (Hctz)) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    BFDA pregnancy category (Probably safe)

    Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

    See the FDA package insert
    No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
    No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
    Kidneys and liver
    • Norvasc (Amlodipine) can cause varying degrees of swelling in your limbs. The most commonly affected areas are your feet, ankles, legs, or occasionally your arms. Swelling may be worse if you have other conditions that makes it hard for your body to get rid of fluids such as congestive heart failure or kidney disease. If your swelling is caused by Norvasc (Amlodipine), it should improve when you stop taking the medication. If the swelling is bothersome, a different medication may be better for you.
    • Doesn't work well in people with severe kidney problems.
    • Requires routine blood tests to check kidney function.
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
    No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people.
    • Calcium channel blockers work especially well for African Americans to lower blood pressure.
    • Prevents heart-related chest pain (angina) if you take it regularly.
    • Each dose lasts longer than other calcium channel blockers, which keeps blood pressure consistent without big ups and downs.
    • Particularly good at lowering systolic blood pressure (the top number), so it's a good option for older people who can commonly get high blood pressure only in the top number.
    • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Works well to get rid of extra fluids in your body through urination.
    • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people. Works especially well for African Americans.
    • Good option if you have both high blood pressure and heart failure.
    • Raises calcium levels in the body, so it can be good for people with osteoporosis to slow down bone loss and even help with new bone formation.
    • Most people have very few side effects.
    • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    Downsides and risks
    • Calcium channel blockers can cause swelling in your limbs. If this happens for you, it probably won't get better over time, so talk to your doctor about alternatives if it bothers you.
    • Women are more likely to have side effects (especially swelling) from Amlodipine than men.
    • Some people might experience flushing with this medication.
    • You can't miss doses. Stopping Amlodipine suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • If you have severe heart disease, using Amlodipine might increase your risk of chest pain or heart attack during the time right after starting the medication or raising the dosage.
    • Might not be a good choice if you have liver disease.
    • Makes you urinate more often.
    • Doesn't work well in people with severe kidney problems.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    • Interacts with the cholesterol medicine Simvastatin.
    • Can cause ankle or foot swelling.
    • Can cause gum overgrowth. Ask your dentist to check for this side effect.
    • Can cause dizziness in the first few days.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    • Starts working in about 2 hours.
    • Makes you urinate more often, so avoid taking it at bedtime.
    • Tell your doctor about any dizziness, fatigue, or muscle weakness that doesn't go away.
    • Requires routine blood tests to check kidney function.
    • Can cause dizziness in the first few days.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    Learn more
    More about NorvascSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about HydrochlorothiazideSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert