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Hypertension/High Blood Pressure Health Center

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High Blood Pressure Drugs

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How Alpha-Blockers Lower High Blood Pressure

This type of high blood pressure medicine reduces nerve impulses that tell your vessels to tighten. Your blood vessels remain relaxed, lowering your overall blood pressure.

Here are some examples of alpha-blockers:

High Blood Pressure and ACE Inhibitors

ACE inhibitors -- angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors -- are a type of high blood pressure medicine prevents your body from making angiotensin II. Angiotensin II is a hormone that makes blood vessels tighten. Because ACE inhibitors lower the amount of this hormone in your body, your blood vessels remain relaxed. Blood flows more easily through the vessels, lowering your overall blood pressure.

Here are examples of ACE inhibitors:

ARBs and Your Blood Pressure

ARBs -- also called angiotensin II receptor blockers -- is a type of high blood pressure medicine prevents blood vessels from tightening. ARBs block the action of angiotensin II, a hormone that makes blood vessels tighten. As a result, blood flows more easily through the vessels. Your blood pressure becomes lower.

Here are examples of ARBs:

Calcium Channel Blockers and High Blood Pressure

Calcium channel blockers are sometimes called CCBs for short. This type of high blood pressure medicine is also called a calcium antagonist. Some CCBs keep blood vessels from tightening so much. They do this by preventing calcium from entering the muscle cells in your heart and blood vessels. Others slow your heart rate. As a result, blood can flow more easily through the vessels. This lowers your blood pressure.

Here are examples of CCBs:

  • Adalat and Procardia (nifedipine)
  • Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan, and others (verapamil)
  • Cardene (nicardipine)
  • Cardizem, Cartia, Dilacor, and Tiazac (diltiazem)
  • DynaCirc (isradipine)
  • Norvasc (amlodipine)
  • Plendil (felodipine)
  • Sular (nisoldipine)

Central Agonists Work on the Brain to Lower Blood Pressure

This type of high blood pressure medicine targets receptors of your brain to help lower blood pressure.

Here are some examples of central agonists:

  • Aldomet (methyldopa)
  • Catapres (clonidine)
  • Tenex (guanfacine)
  • Wytensin (guanabenz)
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