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How Genetics Influence Blood Pressure Medications - Term Paper Example

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"How Genetics Influence Blood Pressure Medications" paper states that the advances made in the field of genomics provide a possible means to the solution, as it may be possible to identify the genetic determinants of an individual’s response to blood pressure medications…
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How Genetics Influence Blood Pressure Medications
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Download file to see previous pages In the United States of America, about sixty-five million people suffer from hypertension, with about one-third of these individuals not having their condition under control. (1). This makes controlling high blood pressure a matter of significant concern for all those who are associated with the healthcare sector. The normal blood pressure of an individual is less than 120 millimeters of mercury systolic and 80 millimeters of mercury diastolic. An increase in the systolic reading to 139 millimeters of mercury and above or diastolic 90 milliliters of mercury and above is termed as high blood pressure or hypertension. Medications are one of the critical factors in trying to control high blood pressure. (2).

There are a large number of medications for the treatment of hypertension. We may consider most of those generally used to be classified into five groups. The first choice of medication in the treatment of hypertension is normally a thiazide diuretic, which by itself may prove useful in the control of hypertension in the individual. In case this does not happen any of the other groups of drugs are added on. These medications consist of beta-blockers, angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, angiotensin II receptor blockers, and calcium channel blockers. (3).

In simple terms the mode of action of these antihypertensive medications may be taken as beta-blockers work by causing a reduction in the nerve signals to the heart and blood vessels, leading to a lowering of blood pressure; ACE inhibitors act by assisting blood vessels to relax through the blocking of the production of the hormone responsible for causing the blood vessels to constrict; the angiotensin II receptor blockers act through allowing the blood vessels to widen by the prevention of the action of the hormone angiotensin on the blood vessels; and the calcium channel blockers prevent calcium from entering into the muscle cells of the heart and blood vessels, thereby causing them to relax, lowering the blood pressure. Thus the different medications available for the treatment of hypertension have different modes of action. (3). ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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