ARBs may help you to control your blood pressure. Salt substitutes such as ‘LoSalt’ contain potassium chloride, which can cause high blood potassium levels. A regular high alcohol intake can worsen high blood pressure, which could counteract the effect of your medication. However, binge drinking can lower blood pressure temporarily.

ARBs can decrease your risk of heart attack, stroke, or death from a cardiac event. This puts blood under greater pressure as it’s forced to move through a smaller-than-normal space. When ARBs block angiotensin II, this reduces the tightening of blood vessels. Both are first-choice drugs for younger, non-African-Caribbean patients with high blood pressure. If this doesn’t go away, patients are often given an ARB instead.

Patients with high blood pressure or heart failure often need a combination of medications. The risk of high potassium levels in the blood (hyperkalaemia) increases if you are taking other drugs that can raise potassium levels. ARBs work by blocking receptors that the hormone acts on, specifically AT1 receptors, which are found in the heart, blood vessels and kidneys. Blocking the action of angiotensin II helps to lower blood pressure and prevent damage to the heart and kidneys. Taking ARBs and ACE inhibitors together should be avoided as this may increase the risk of low blood pressure, kidney damage, and high potassium levels. ARBs are commonly used for high blood pressure (hypertension), chronic kidney disease, and following a heart attack to limit further damage.

  1. This narrowing can cause high blood pressure and poor blood flow through the kidneys.
  2. Some medical professionals advise that people of childbearing age avoid the use of ARBs altogether.
  3. ARBs work by blocking the action of a natural chemical called angiotensin II.
  4. You may need ARBs or another blood pressure medicine for life.

Angiotensin II receptor blockers are medications that treat high blood pressure and heart failure. They are also called angiotensin II receptor blockers or ARBs. ARBs are typically used to treat high blood pressure, heart failure, and chronic kidney disease. Learn how they work, their benefits, and their side effects.

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ARBs reduce the action of the hormone angiotensin II. This hormone has a powerful constricting effect on blood vessels, increasing blood pressure. Angiotensin II also stimulates salt and water retention in the body, which further increases blood pressure. When you’re taking blood pressure medicine, you should always check with your healthcare provider before taking over-the-counter medicines or supplements. Some medicines for allergies, coughs and colds, as well as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), can increase blood pressure. ARBs treat heart failure and high blood pressure and may be prescribed following a heart attack.

We explain how they work, what they’re used for, and possible side effects. More recently, studies published in 2014 and 2016 also suggest that there’s no increased risk of cancer in people taking ARBs. A study published in 2017 indicated that ARBs may actually be helpful for people with prostate cancer. arb meaning At this time, the FDA states that treatment with an ARB medication doesn’t increase the risk of cancer. If you have kidney disease, ARBs may be one of the more effective treatments for high blood pressure. Some animal and human studies have also shown that ARBs may help protect against cognitive decline.

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Doctors can prescribe alternatives to ARBs for those planning a pregnancy. Some medical professionals advise that people of childbearing age avoid the use of ARBs altogether. ARBs are generally well-tolerated but, as with any drug, they can cause unwanted effects, including dizziness, headache and fatigue. Speak to your doctor if this is the case; you may need regular blood tests to monitor your potassium levels. All content on this website, including dictionary, thesaurus, literature, geography, and other reference data is for informational purposes only. The easiest way to lookup drug information, identify pills, check interactions and set up your own personal medication records.

It may be necessary to stop taking the medication temporarily, for example, if you have severe diarrhoea or vomiting. In this scenario, you may become dehydrated and ARBs could then upset the kidneys. Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances. Most people take ARBs in once-daily doses in the morning.

angiotensin-receptor blocker

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), high blood pressure affects 1 in 3 American adults. Only 54 percent of people with the condition have it under control. Your doctor may suggest treatment with ARBs instead of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, another group of hypertension medications. Taking ARBs with ACE inhibitors is not recommended, due to increased risk of acute kidney injury and high potassium levels, which are linked to abnormal heart rhythms. You take the medicine once or twice a day by mouth, depending on which ARB.

ACE inhibitors also reduce the effect of angiotensin, but by decreasing the amount your body makes, rather than blocking receptors. But some people produce too much of the protein due to heart disease, genetics or other issues. Studies have shown that exposure to ARBs during pregnancy can disturb embryo and fetus development and increase the risk of adverse health outcomes in pregnant people. Blood vessels supply blood and oxygen to the heart. Angiotensin II is a hormone made by our body, and it tightens the muscles of our blood vessels. If your blood pressure is high all the time, it can damage your heart and lead to other health problems.

All ARBs can be used to treat high blood pressure. However, specific ARBs may be recommended for other medical conditions, according to the American Journal of Cardiovascular Drugs. You may find ARBs combined with another drug such as hydrochlorothiazide. This is a diuretic drug that causes you to pass urine more often. Examples of these combination drugs include hydrochlorothiazide-valsartan (Diovan HCT) and hydrochlorothiazide-losartan (Hyzaar). ACE inhibitors have similar properties to ARBs, and the drugs are often used interchangeably.

For example, valsartan is suggested for heart failure and following a heart attack. Losartan may be best suited for heart failure, kidney damage related to diabetes, and stroke prevention. After you start the drug, you’ll need another blood-test to check your kidney function.

Angiotensin II receptor blockers or ARBs are an effective treatment for high blood pressure, heart failure, kidney disease and other conditions. The medications prevent angiotensin II proteins from binding to receptors in the blood which causes blood vessels to narrow. As a result, blood vessels relax, allowing blood to move freely through the body. ARBs cause few problems, making them a good option for people who can’t take ACE inhibitors due to medication side effects.