calcium-channel blocker


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calcium-channel blocker,

any of a class of drugs used in treating hypertensionhypertension
or high blood pressure,
elevated blood pressure resulting from an increase in the amount of blood pumped by the heart or from increased resistance to the flow of blood through the small arterial blood vessels (arterioles).
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, angina pectorisangina pectoris
, condition characterized by chest pain that occurs when the muscles of the heart receive an insufficient supply of oxygen. This results when the arteries that supply the heart muscle with oxygenated blood are narrowed by arteriosclerosis.
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, and certain arrhythmiasarrhythmia
, disturbance in the rate or rhythm of the heartbeat. Various arrhythmias can be symptoms of serious heart disorders; however, they are usually of no medical significance except in the presence of additional symptoms.
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. They prevent the calcium ions needed for muscle contraction from entering the cells of smooth and cardiac muscle. This causes blood vessel walls to relax and blood to flow more freely to the heart, lowering blood pressure and relieving anginal pain. Some calcium-channel blockers, such as Procardia (nifedipine), slow the electrical impulses that run through heart muscle, thus regulating arrhythmias. Cardizem (diltiazem) is a common calcium-channel blocker.
References in periodicals archive ?
However, an unpublished meta-analysis is purported to show a higher risk of heart failure, heart attack, and major cardiovascular events with calcium-channel blockers compared with diuretics, [Beta]-blockers, clonidine, or ACE inhibitors.[3] Until this question is resolved, the effective less expensive agents remain the best choice for most patients with hypertension.
News: Calcium-channel blockers inferior to cheaper drugs.
After adjusting for numerous other risk factors, such as smoking, alcohol use, and age, the researchers concluded that people taking calcium-channel blockers face a 72 percent greater risk of developing cancer than those not taking these drugs.
Animal studies have suggested that drugs called calcium-channel blockers can protect fragile brain and heart cells after heart stoppage.
Medications for treating high blood pressure, called antihypertensives, are the most commonly prescribed drugs in the United States with an estimated 678 million prescriptions filled in 2010, including 98 million prescriptions for calcium-channel blockers, the researchers said.
Researchers analyzed data from more than 7,000 patients age 66 and older who took calcium-channel blockers, such as amlodipine (Norvasc), for high blood pressure.
The recent updated British Hypertension Society guidelines7 on blood pressure recommend that calcium-channel blockers or diuretics may be more effective initial therapy for blood pressure in black people or elderly people than ACE inhibitors or b-blockers.
Non-dihydropyridine calcium-channel blockers (diltiazem, verapamil) and most beta-blockers are effective for controlling heart rate both at rest and during exercise (SOR: A, based on RCTs).
Each pellet contained prolonged-release nicardipine, a member of a drug class known as calcium-channel blockers that help blood vessels relax and are commonly used to treat hypertension and angina.
Ganciclovir had a long-term effect on patients who weren't getting drugs called calcium-channel blockers. These medications limit coronary artery spasms and slow progression of atherosclerosis.
Two new studies of nifedipine, a drug commonly prescribed for high blood pressure and heart disease, have generated fierce controversy over the safety of calcium-channel blockers, the class of compounds to which nifedipine belongs.
Called calcium-channel blockers, these drugs dilate vessels by blocking the tiny pores that let calcium ions -- known to constrict vessels -- into the cells of artery walls.

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