Health In Focus
  • Hypertension or high blood pressure is the increased pressure of the blood in the arteries.
  • Beta - blockers, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin antagonists and thiazide diuretics are some of the commonly prescribed blood pressure medicines.
  • A research team from the University of Glasgow has studied the increased risk of mood disorders being associated with blood pressure medications.
  • The findings suggested that angiotensin antagonist drugs were found to be the repurposed treatment for hypertension with a lower risk of mood disorders.

A new research study published in the American Heart Association's journal Hypertension has found that commonly prescribed blood pressure medicines may increase the risk of depression or mood disorders.

Hypertension or high blood pressure is the increased force exerted against the walls of the arteries during pumping of blood. High blood pressure may increase the risk of heart diseases and stroke.
Blood Pressure Medicines May Increase Risk of Mood Disorders

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 75 million people in America have hypertension and around 410,000 people died due to high blood pressure in 2014.

In India, it is estimated that around 214 million people would be affected by hypertension in 2025.

Antihypertensive drugs like beta - blockers, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin receptor antagonists might help in the treatment of high blood pressure.

Research Study on the Risk of Mood Disorders with High Blood Pressure Medicines

A research team from the University of Glasgow has collected data from 525,046 people between the age group of 40 - 80 years from two large secondary care Scottish hospitals. Out of which 144,066 patients who were treated for hypertension using angiotensin antagonist, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers and thiazide diuretics drugs were selected and compared with a control group of 111,936 patients who did not use any of these drugs.

Sanjay Padmanaban M.D, Ph.D., study author and professor at the University of Glasgow compared the four classes of antihypertensive drugs along with the risk of mood disorders and found that two drugs increased the risk of mood disorders while one of them was found to decrease the risk.

He said that "Mental health is under-recognized in hypertension clinical practice, and the possible impact of antihypertensive drugs on mental health is an area that physicians should be aware of and consider if the treatment of high blood pressure is having a negative impact on their patient's mental health"

The findings of the study reported that about 299 patients were admitted to the hospitals due to severe depression. These patients were under high blood pressure treatment for an average of 2.3 years.

Patients who took beta - blockers or calcium channel blockers were at an increased risk for mood disorders when compared to patients who were treated using angiotensin antagonists.

On comparison with the control group who did not take any drugs, patients who took angiotensin antagonists had a lower risk for mood disorders. Thiazide diuretics were at the same risk for mood disorders as that of the control group. It was also found that presence of other medical conditions along with hypertension may also influence the risk of mood disorders.

Padmanaban also said that, "It is important that these results are validated in independent studies. This is a single center study, which looked at the risk of the more severe forms of mood disorders requiring hospitalization. It would be important to study the effect of these drugs on minor to modest changes in mood, as these will have an impact on the quality of life among hypertensive patients."

High Blood Pressure Medications:

The normal blood pressure range for a healthy adult is 120/80 mm of Hg. High blood pressure medications like beta - blockers, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin antagonists and thiazide diuretics are some of the commonly prescribed drugs for the treatment of hypertension. Side Effects of Blood Pressure Medications:

Common side effects of blood pressure medicines may include:
  • Dizziness or light headedness
  • Drowsiness
  • Mood disturbances
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Nervousness
  • Skin rashes
  • Erectile dysfunction
Mood Disorders:

Mood disorders are usually associated with distorted emotional state. Anxiety, depression, bipolar disorders (This may vary from a feeling of extreme happiness or extreme sadness) are few examples of mood related disorders.

References :
  1. High Blood Pressure - General Information - (
  2. High Blood Pressure Fact Sheet - (
  3. Hypertension in India - (
  4. High Blood Pressure Medicines - (

Source: Medindia

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