Before prescribing any medication to treat hypertension, doctors must make sure that the correct name of the drug is known by the patient. Many people are familiar with common names for hypertension medications such as Zantac, H barr, and Virex. There are other well-known names such as Reglan and Protonix. Each of these medications has different ways in which the drug is used to treat high blood pressure. This article briefly discusses the generic names of hypertension medication, as well as the variations on these names that can be confusing to patients.
For many years, the standard name for a medication used to treat high blood pressure was “hypertensive” or “cor pulmonale”. This term referred to only the medication and did not necessarily mean that the patient had hypertension. In fact, many people with high blood pressure were simply assigned a “healthy” designation, without any indication of whether they actually had high blood pressure or not. In recent years, the term “hypertension” has been replaced by the more accurate term “hypertensive disease”.
The generic name of a blood pressure medication called captopril was first approved in 1982, and at the time, it was commonly known as “CAP”. The CAP acronym stands for the terms alpha-peptide, dihydro-apisoate, and pennosporin. The alpha-peptides are responsible for the ability of the drug to reduce fluid buildup, so it reduces blood pressure. The dihydro-apisoate and pennosporin help to prevent the formation of kidney stones. All of these ingredients are listed on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website.
In recent years, other names have been used to describe drugs that lower blood pressure: antihypertensives, nitroglycerine, and botulinum toxin. Botulinum toxin actually acts on the nerves in the body, causing them to stop sending chemical signals to the brain. Because the brain does not receive the signal, the nerve cells do not pass the messages to the heart, which causes hypertension. The FDA website does not list Botox as one of the medicines used to lower high blood pressure, but the site does list it among those medicines that can be used for “circulatory disease”.
Some of the new classes of drugs for high blood pressure are called ACE inhibitors and diuretics. ACE inhibitors reduce the amount of sodium and potassium carried by the blood. The FDA website does not list any specific ACE inhibitor or diuretic.
Other ACE inhibitors reduce the acid that builds up in the low blood vessels, preventing acid from building up in the arteries. The blood vessels are less likely to become blocked by calcium. Diuretics reduce the amount of fluid carried by the body. These medications are sometimes called diuretics and can be used to treat conditions like hypercholesterolemia and atherosclerosis.
You may not be aware that your medication may be causing you more problems than it solves. Many times, the medication will correct an underlying problem. In this case, the FDA has posted warnings about two other medications commonly used to treat hypertension. The first is Tagamet, which increases the rate of potassium retention, causing your blood vessels to become constricted. The second is Dichlorapacin, which increases the rate of calcium exit from the blood vessels, causing them to become narrow.
If you take one of the new high blood pressure medications, you should avoid alcoholic beverages as well. Alcohol increases the potassium levels in your body, and the increased pressure on your arteries will worsen if there is an increase in the amount of potassium in your body. Your blood pressure medication will work more effectively if it does not contain ingredients that could harm your health.