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How Does Blood Pressure Medicine Work

How Is Resistant Hypertension Diagnosed

Blood Pressure Medication Management
  • Full history and physical exam, which includes letting your doctor know about all medications and supplements, whether they are prescription, over-the-counter, herbal or recreational. Its important to mention if you skip doses of daily medicines.
  • True measurement of your blood pressure using correct technique and calibrated equipment.
  • Home blood pressure measurement during the day and 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring to record your blood pressure throughout a regular day. It may be used if your physician suspects your blood pressure readings in the office dont tell the whole story.
  • Tests for secondary conditions, which may include special blood work and imaging studies. Identifying and treating these conditions may eliminate hypertension or at least make it more treatable.
  • Tests for organ damage caused by hypertension, which may include:
  • Electrocardiogram to measure your hearts size and rhythm
  • Echocardiogram to measure your hearts size and function
  • Fundoscopic eye exam to check for damaged blood vessels inside the eye these tiny blood vessels come in from the brain and are a unique opportunity for your doctor to judge the health of similar blood vessels in your brain, heart and kidneys
  • Urinalysis to check for kidney damage
  • Other blood tests
  • Chest X-ray

Exact Answer: Four Hours

Blood pressure is a vital part of our health. It is the type of pressure force pushing the blood to the walls of blood vessels in our body. It is measured using a sphygmomanometer. If high, it can put a risk to blood vessels only. Then it can cause problems to many organs. High blood pressure is also known as Hypertension.

120 is the upper limit, and 80 is the lower limit of Blood pressure. It is written with the help of two numbers like 120/80. The first number we see is systolic pressure. The force blood pushes against artery walls is called Systolic pressure. The diastolic pressure is the other number. Diastolic pressure reflects pressure, which is against the artery walls. With this pressure, the heart relaxes, and ventricles are allowed to refill.

What Are High Blood Pressure Medications

High blood pressure medications, also known as antihypertensives, are prescribed medications to treat high blood pressure. Antihypertensive medications do not cure hypertension but may lower and/or maintain the blood pressure at normal levels.

What is high blood pressure?

High blood pressure is a condition when blood flow exerts higher pressure on the arteries than normal. Blood pressure is measured in two values in mg Hg:

  • Systolic: Blood pressure when the heart pumps out blood
  • Diastolic: Blood pressure when the heart relaxes between two beats

Blood pressure is written as systolic/diastolic pressure. Blood pressure is considered to be high if either one or both of the two values are higher than the normal range . Early treatment of high blood pressure can prevent damage to the arteries and heart, and the resultant life-threatening conditions such as heart attack, stroke, and kidney disease.

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Other Blood Pressure Medications

There are several other types of medications that lower blood pressure but dont have the same protective effects on the heart and the brain. These are typically used when your blood pressure is still high after trying several of the drugs described above. They might also be used if you have other health conditions that the medications would help to treat.

Lets run through some of those choices here.

Beta blockers

  • How they work: Beta blockers stop adrenaline from increasing the heart rate. This allows your heart to beat more slowly and with less force, relieving stress on blood vessels and lowering blood pressure. They are usually not the best first option for treating HBP because they can make you feel tired or less energetic.

  • Who they’re good for: Because they lower stress on the heart, beta blockers are helpful if the arteries leading to your heart muscles are blocked . Beta blockers help treat chest pain, heart attacks, and heart failure.They are also one of the safer options for pregnant women.

  • Precautions: If you are taking a beta blocker regularly, do not stop suddenly as this can cause your BP to rise.

  • Examples: Atenolol, betaxolol, bisoprolol, metoprolol, nebivolol, nadolol, propranolol, acebutolol, penbutolol, and pindolol.

Alpha blockers

Alpha/beta blocker combinations

Other diuretics

Less common medications for high blood pressure

Several other types of medications work to lower blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels. These include:

What Should I Do If My Blood Pressure Is 160 Over 100

How does Hypertension work and what can you do?

Your doctor If your blood pressure is higher than 160/100 mmHg, then three visits are enough. If your blood pressure is higher than 140/90 mmHg, then five visits are needed before a diagnosis can be made. If either your systolic or diastolic blood pressure stays high, then the diagnosis of hypertension can be made.

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Take Your High Blood Pressure Drugs Exactly As Prescribed

High blood pressure drugs work best if you take them as your doctor has prescribed them. So you need to take the right amount at the right times every day. Ask your doctor or pharmacist these questions:

  • How much of the medication should I take?
  • How often should I take it?
  • Are there special instructions, such as to take the drug with food?
  • What should I do if I miss a dose?

Other Medicines For High Blood Pressure

Apart from the five main classes of medicines listed above, sometimes other medicines are used to lower blood pressure. For example:

Methyldopa or alpha-blockers are sometimes used if there are problems with the more commonly used medicines. Doxazosin is an alpha-blocker commonly added when blood pressure is high despite the treated person being on other medicines.

Spironolactone is another stronger ‘water’ tablet sometimes used as an add-on option for blood pressure which is difficult to control. Spironolactone is not usually given alongside ACE inhibitors or ARBs because the combination can cause potassium levels in the body to become dangerously high. Regular blood tests to check for this are needed if you are on this medication or medicine combination.

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What Are Other Ways I Can Lower My Blood Pressure

In addition to taking medicine to control your blood pressure, you can take other steps to help keep your blood pressure levels healthy.

  • Get regular physical activity. Staying physically active is one of the best things you can do for your health. Physical activity helps keep your heart and blood vessels strong. It also can help you keep a healthy weight.
  • Do not smoke. Smoking damages your blood vessels and greatly increases your risk of not only high blood pressure but also heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.
  • Eat healthy foods. Choosing healthy meal and snack options can help you avoid high blood pressure and its complications. Be sure to eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables.
  • Keep a healthy weight. Having overweight or obesity means your heart must work harder to pump blood and oxygen around the body. Staying at a healthy weight reduces the stress on your heart and reduces your risk for heart disease, heart attack, and stroke.

Is It Better To Take A Beta Blocker At Night

How does Losartan (ARBs) Work?

Blood pressure medications/beta blockers: If youre taking these medications, talk to your health care provider about the ideal time of day to take them, though as a general rule of thumb, evening is best. Providers may specify to take these in the evening because of side effects that can occur, Verduzco said.

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Drugs Vs Lifestyle Change

First, keep in mind that drugs have limited success. Most studies on diuretics and other blood pressure-lowering drugs suggest they lower the risk of cardiovascular events among those with blood pressure between 140/90 and 159/99 by 15 to 20%.3 The problem is, with this range of blood pressure, the risk of cardiovascular-related deaths has increased by 300 to 400% compared to people with normal blood pressure.

So, while treating hypertension with drugs is generally better than no treatment, it is far from a cure, asserts Dr. Fruge.

Make Lifestyle Changes First

Even if you don’t have high blood pressure, it’s important to take steps to keep it under control because it tends to get higher with age. That’s especially important if you’re a black American or have a family history of the condition, since both sharply increase the risk of developing it. And a healthy diet and lifestyle are essential if you already have high-normal readings. For people with high blood pressure, lifestyle measures can sometimes reduce or even eliminate the need for drugs. For example, research has found that the DASH diet can be as effective as medication for some people with mild hypertension. This relatively low-sodium diet relies on fruit, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products. The potassium in those foods, and possibly the calcium, too, appear to help control blood pressure. For people with normal blood pressure and no heart disease or stroke risk factors, the suggested 2,400 mg daily sodium limit, achievable by adopting the DASH diet alone, might help ward off the upward creep of blood pressure that can occur with age. Other steps include losing excess weight, exercising regularly, and drinking alcohol only in moderation, as shown in the table below.

Aim for a body mass index under 25. 2.5 to 10 mmHg for about every 11 pounds

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If You Have High Blood Pressure You Might Need To Take Medications To Help Lower It

Making healthy changes to your lifestyle could be enough to lower your blood pressure to a healthy level, but some people will also need medicines.

If you start taking high blood pressure medicines, its likely you will need to keep taking them for a long time. If your blood pressure stays under control for several years, you might be able to take a lower dose or stop taking them altogether. can help.

  • Occasionally medications dont bring blood pressure down low enough, even if youre having more than one type of medication and at the highest possible dose. This is called resistant hypertension. Sometimes the medications bring blood pressure down but the side effects are too much to live with.If you have resistant hypertension or severe side effects, you can ask to be referred to a .

Finding The Right Blood Pressure Medications For You


How blood pressure medicines work

Your body is constantly working to keep your blood pressure under control. There are receptors in your blood vessel walls which detect when your blood pressure is too high or low. In response, your nerves, hormones and kidneys all play a role in bringing it back to a safe level.

Over time, your blood pressure can creep up for a number of reasons, including an unhealthy lifestyle, and medications can help to bring it back down. They do this by acting on the ways your body controls blood pressure. Some affect the nerves or hormones which send signals to your blood vessel walls, telling them to relax or contract, while some affect the kidneys, causing them to remove excess salt and water from the blood.

Taking more than one medicine

Taking a combination of different medicines can work better than taking one, because they work in different ways. Taking a low dose of two medications rather than a high dose of one, can also help to avoid side effects, as side effects can sometimes be caused by the dose.

Sometimes a medication will work well to begin with, but with time your blood pressure might creep up again. You may then need to take another medicine alongside it which works in a different way.

Choosing a medicine to suit you

Which medications will be suitable for you depends on a number of things, including your:

Finding the right combination of medicines

Simplifying your medicines

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Reason: You Might Not Be Taking Medications Correctly Or You Could Be Taking Otherdrugs That Interfere

With complicated dosingschedules, people can forget to take medications or not take the correct dosesat the correct times.

Also, other drugs caninterfere with blood pressure control, including pain relievers , oralcontraceptives and nasal decongestants. Thats why its good to bring all ofyour pill bottles, including over-the-counter medications or vitamins, to yourappointments.

What Is My Risk

Your individual risk of developing cardiovascular disease can be determined together with your doctor. You will need to consider the exact details of the individual risk factors, and determine your current blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels. This information is entered into a computer program that calculates your risk level. The calculation is based on data from studies that observed many thousands of people for years.

You will get a percentage showing your likelihood of having a stroke or a heart attack within the next ten years.

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What Do John And Henry Decide

Together with their doctors, John and Henry have each found out their risk of cardiovascular disease and talked about the next steps.


  • has decided not to use antihypertensive medication. He feels healthy and doesn’t want to have to take medicine every day especially since his risk of developing blood-pressure-related health problems would only decrease by 2%. Also, he thinks that his lifestyle is already pretty healthy: He runs several races a year, eats a balanced diet and doesn’t drink much alcohol. He tells himself: “If my blood pressure suddenly goes up in a few years, I can still start taking medication then.”


  • has decided to take medication, but also wants to make a serious attempt to quit smoking. The numbers that his doctor has described to him have made him think things over. He considers a probability of 33% of developing long-term health problems to be very high. When he asked about possible side effects, his doctor assured him that most people tolerate antihypertensive medication quite well.

John and Henry’s cases show that deciding whether or not to use medication for blood pressure is a matter of individual choice as well.

Why Could My Blood Pressure Medicine Not Be Working

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Side Effects Of Blood Pressure Medications

Occasionally, side effects only happen when you first start taking a new medication or a higher dose. As your body gets used to the medicines the side effects improve or go away.

If you have side effects which dont go awaySometimes side effects dont go away and can affect your day to day life. If this happens, its important that you dont simply stop taking them because your blood pressure will go back up.

Instead, talk to your doctor because they will be able to try a lower dose of your medication, a different medication, or a different combination of medications. Often this will lower your blood pressure with no problems at all.

If you have tried different options and youre still experiencing side effects, your GP can refer you to a . They can often help you get the right balance between controlling your blood pressure and keeping the side effects to a minimum, and might be able to try different treatments.

What are the possible side effects?The side effects vary with . They also vary from person to person. For example, can cause a dry cough in some people, but dizziness or an upset stomach in others. The leaflet that comes with your medication will include a list of possible side effects.

A common side effect is feeling faint or dizzy when you go from sitting or lying down to standing up, especially at night. This is called postural hypotension, and can happen with any blood pressure medication.

How Does Your Blood Pressure Medication Work

Have you ever wondered what’s going on behind the scenes with your blood pressure medication? Here’s how blood pressure medications work.

Blood pressure medications are grouped into several classes. Each class works in a different way to lower blood pressure. The main classes are:

diuretics : This class of medications works by increasing the amount of urine your body produces. This causes the body to lose salt and water, which decreases the volume of the blood, leading to lower blood pressure.

ACE inhibitors : This class of medications works by blocking the body’s production of a substance that tightens the blood vessels. As a result, the blood vessels become more relaxed, and the pressure of the blood inside the vessels decreases.

beta-blockers : These medications work by slowing down the heartbeat and decreasing the strength of each beat. This means blood is pumped through the vessels with less force, which lowers blood pressure.

angiotensin II receptor blockers : This group of medications works in a similar way as the ACE inhibitors. But instead of blocking the production of the blood vessel-tightening substance, it stops the substance from working on the blood vessels. This causes the blood vessels to relax and the blood pressure to decrease.

Although not a separate class, there are a number of products available in combination formulations that contain two medications in one pill . These combination products reduce the number of pills you need to take.

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