GENERIC NAME: prazosin hydrochloride
BRAND NAME: Minipress
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Prazosin (Minipress) is an oral medicine used to treat high blood pressure. Prazosin is a competitive alpha-1 adrenergic receptor blocker. By blocking alpha-1 receptors on muscle cesll that surround blood vessels, prazosin causes vasodilation (widening) of the blood vessels, and consequently decreases the resistance of blood flow. The overall benefit of its use is a decrease in blood pressure.
Prazosin seems to have a bigger impact on reducing the diastolic blood pressure than systolic blood pressure. Diastolic blood pressure is indicated by the second set of numbers in the blood pressure reading and corresponds to the minimum pressure in the arteries when the heart muscles are relaxed and the chambers of the heart are filling with blood.
Prazosin was approved by the FDA in 1976.
PRESCRIBED FOR: Prazosin is used to treat high blood pressure. It can be used alone or in combination with other medications to lower blood pressure.
Prazosin also may be prescribed to certain patients with:
- benign prostatic hyperplasia,
- heart failure,
- hypertensive urgency,
- post-traumatic stress disorder, and
- Raynaud's phenomenon.
SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects associated with prazosin treatment include:
Quick GuideHow to Lower Blood Pressure: Exercise Tips
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