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Anti Hypertensive Drugs

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Anti-Hypertensive Drugs are medicines that are used to help lower blood pressure or reduce hypertension.

High Blood Pressure and Hypertension

Anti-Hypertensive Drugs are used to help control blood pressure in people whose blood pressure is too high. Some people have blood pressure that stays high all the time. This condition is known as hypertension. Being aware of high blood pressure and doing something to control it are very. Untreated, high blood pressure can lead to diseases of the heart, arteries, kidney damage, or stroke.

For high blood pressure treatment, the type of hypertension needs to be known. In most cases the common cause of high blood pressure is Essential or Primary Hypertension, which means that the high blood pressure is not caused by some other medical condition. Such high pressure problems can be controlled by anti hypertension medication and changes in diet, doing regular exercise, and controlling weight. Controlling primary hypertension is a life long treatment.

The other type of hypertension is secondary hypertension. This is caused due to medical problems like kidney disease, narrowing of certain arteries, or adrenal glands tumors. Correcting these problems often cures the problem of high blood pressure, and no further treatment is needed.

How Does Hypertension Medication Works?

Hypertension medication works in the following ways:

  • They reduce blood volume. This in turn reduces central venous pressure and cardiac output).
  • They reduce systemic vascular resistance.
  • They reduce cardiac output by depressing heart rate and stroke volume.

Drugs Used to Treat Hypertension/High Blood Pressure

Many different types of drugs are used, alone or in combination with other drugs, to treat hypertension/high blood pressure. The major categories are:

  • Angiotensin-converting Enzyme (ACE) Inhibitors: They work by preventing a chemical in the blood, angiotensin I, from being converted into a substance that increases water and salt retention in the body. They make blood vessels relax, which further reduces blood pressure. ·
  • Angiotensin II Receptor Antagonists: They act at a later step in the same process that ACE inhibitors affect. Like ACE inhibitors, they lower blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels. ·
  • Beta blockers: Beta blockers affect the body's response to certain nerve impulses. This, in turn, decreases the force and rate of the heart's contractions, which lowers blood pressure. ·
  • Blood Vessel Dilators (Vasodilators): These drugs lower blood pressure by relaxing muscles in the blood vessel walls. ·
  • Calcium Channel Blockers: They slow the movement of calcium into the cells of blood vessels. This relaxes the blood vessels and lowers blood pressure. ·
  • Diuretics: They control blood pressure by eliminating excess salt and water from the body. ·
  • Nerve Blockers: They control nerve impulses along certain nerve pathways. This allows blood vessels to relax and lowers blood pressure.

Popular Hypertension Drugs
  • Propranolol (Inderal)
  • Atenolol (Tenormin)
  • Pindolol (Visken)
  • Losartan (Cozaar)
  • Candesartan (Atacand)
  • lirbesartan (Avapro)
  • Telmisartan (Micardis)
  • Valsartan (Diovan)
  • Eprosartan (Teveten) etc.

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