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Hypertension

Using MedShadow to Become Better Informed About Your Meds

Over my career as a pharmacist, I’ve been very conscientious about filling prescriptions accurately as prescribed. I’ve also made it a priority to focus on counseling patients on how to take their medications properly and informing them of potential side effects to look out for. Now that I’m on the…

Can Exercise Work as Well as Medication at Lowering Blood Pressure?

If you have hypertension, getting regular exercise can be just as effective at lowering your blood pressure as taking medication, according to a new meta-analysis. Researchers analyzed data from 194 trials that looked at how drugs lowered high blood pressure, as well as 197 trials that looked at exercise in…

No Cardiovascular Benefit Using Meds in Mild Hypertension

Patients with mild hypertension receive no benefit in terms of lowering the risk of death or cardiovascular disease from taking high blood pressure medication, though they have a higher risk of adverse events. That’s the conclusion of a new study of more than 38,000 patients with low-risk, mild hypertension (blood…

Quick Hits: Recall of Hypertension Drug Grows, Probiotics Side Effects & More

The FDA has expanded a recall of a hypertension drug over concerns it may contain a carcinogen. The latest recall involves valsartan that was made by a Chinese pharmaceutical company. The recalled valsartan contains a potentially dangerous component, N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), which laboratory studies have shown can cause cancer or liver…

Ways to Lower High Blood Pressure Without Relying on Drugs

If you have hypertension — high blood pressure — you may think that the only way to control it is to take a drug. But did you know that many classes of hypertension drugs have serious side effects? For instance, beta blockers — such as Lopressor and Toprol-XL (metoprolol), Tenormin…

ACE Inhibitors

Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors are most commonly prescribed for high blood pressure (hypertension) and heart disease, but they can also be used to treat scleroderma, migraines, diabetes, kidney disease and even post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Like any drug, ACE inhibitors can cause serious side effects. Understanding all the facts about…

Combining Smaller Doses of Blood Pressure Drugs Lowers Side Effects

Using lower doses of a combination of blood pressure medications is as effective and has far fewer side effects than taking a standard dose of a single hypertension drug, according to a new review. Researchers, examining data from 42 prior trials that involved more than 20,000 people with high blood…

Many Patients With Hard-to-Treat Hypertension Don’t Take Their Meds

Nearly 20% of people with hard-to-treat high blood pressure are not taking all of their medication as directed. Even more troubling, an additional 20% don’t take any of the drugs they are prescribed. Resistant hypertension is defined as having high blood pressure despite taking 3 or more medications to control…

Blood Pressure Meds Threshold Lowered for Most Seniors

Two top physician groups are recommending a less aggressive threshold for beginning treatment of high blood pressure with medication in older adults in good health. A recently issued guideline from the American College of Physicians (ACP) and the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) recommends that doctors start hypertension drugs…

Some Blood Pressure Meds May Boost Risk for Mood Disorders

People who take certain blood pressure-lowering medications may be at an elevated risk of developing mood disorders, including depression and bipolar disorder. Researchers examined data on more than 144,000 adults with an average age of 56. Just over 32,000 of them were taking one of 4 types of drug to…

Drugs With Highest Risk for Dehydration or Heat-Related Illness

People who start certain drugs, such as blood thinners (anticoagulants), cardiovascular medicines, over-the-counter pain killers (NSAIDs/non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), antipsychotics, antidepressants and anticholinergic agents (used to treat asthma, incontinence) face a higher risk of heat-related illnesses and dehydration that may require a trip to the hospital. Australian researchers conducted an analysis,…

High Blood Pressure Med May Increase Risk of Low White Blood Cell Count

A common drug used to treat high blood pressure may elevate the risk in some patients of a condition in which a person’s white blood cell count is severely diminished, leaving them more susceptible to infection. A recent case study discussed in the American Journal of Case Reports described a…

Rare Peek in to Internal FDA Furor

The latest question before the FDA concerns the use of ARBs (angiotensin receptor blockers), when used primarily to manage hypertension. Dr. Thomas Marciniak, FDA official, says the use of ARB-drugs seem to be linked somehow to an increase in the risk of lung cancer. Other FDA officials disagree and don’t want to promote/demand any further clinical…

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