Q: What is the difference between ARB's and ACE inhibitors?
ACE Inhibitors (Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors) act within the kidney's. The kidney's produce renin. Renin is converted to angiotensis-I on into angiotensis-II. Angiotensin-II is a powerful vasoconstrictor (causes your blood vessel diameter to be smaller). Angiotensin-II also secretes aldosterone, which holds water and sodium in the kidneys instead of excreting them. This leads to increased blood volume and high blood pressure. ACE Inhibitors prevent the conversion of angiotensin-I to angiotensin-II.
ARB's (Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers) also work within the kidney. ARB's prevent angiotensin-II from binding to its' receptor site, preventing blood vessel constriction and the secretion of aldosterone.
ARB's are a newer class of high blood pressure medication and tend to be better tolerated. However, it's best to work with your MD to determine the appropriate medication for your treatment.
All the best,
Lisa Nelson, RD, LN
Diet to Lower High Blood Pressure
Perhaps I can help a little...ACEI work elsewhere in the body besides the kidneys, and in the lungs it is believed that the ACEI family of drugs prevent the breakdown of certain chemicals which can result in coughing. It is also possible that this results in a proinflammatory response. Most of the time, when the ACEI medication is withdrawn, the cough symptoms subside.
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