Introduction to Treatments
There are various treatments available to patients diagnosed with hypertension. These can be pharmacological or non-pharmacological.
Non - Pharmacological Treatments
These are associated with a healthy lifestyle and can often be used as preventative measures. They include:
- Weight Loss
- Regular Exercise
- Healthy Diet - i.e. no excess salt, alcohol, etc.
- No smoking
A diverse range of drugs are available to treat hypertension. Some example are:
- e.g. Thiazides - Promote secretion of Na+ and Cl-, which in turn promotes water loss
- e.g. Clonidine - Decreases sympathetic output
- e.g. Prazosin - Relaxes smooth muscle
- e.g. Propanolol - decreases heart rate and contractility - These, however, are being phased out.
Calcium Channel Blockers
- Broad Spectrum - e.g. Minoxidil - this acts by decreasing contractility of cardiac and vascular smooth muscle
- Selective - e.g. Manidipine - decreases contractility of vascular smooth muscle
- Captopril - Inhibit angiotensin converting enzyme. This enzyme produces angiotensin II, which is involved in vasoconstriction