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Almost 20% of people with high blood pressure (hypertension) may inadvertently be interfering with their blood pressure control by taking certain medications, according to data from 27,599 people who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The most common problem drugs are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) other than aspirin, including ibuprofen (Advil), naproxen (Aleve), and many others. Other classes of drugs, such as certain antidepressants, may also increase blood pressure.
The researchers noticed that people who used drugs with the potential to raise blood pressure also were more likely to be taking more blood pressure medications and higher doses.
The findings reinforce the importance of medication management. If you take any blood pressure drug, make sure to review your medications, even over-the-counter products, with your doctor to see if changes are needed. The researchers added that there may be alternatives to these drugs that won’t affect blood pressure; for example, many people taking NSAIDs for pain may get similar relief with acetaminophen (Tylenol). The results were published online Nov. 21, 2021, by JAMA Internal Medicine.
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