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High blood pressure treatments: Taking tablets
Q. I've heard that some blood pressure medicines can cause side-effects - what are they?
A. Side-effects is the name given to any unwanted effects of medicines. For example, in some people, ACE inhibitor medicines can cause the unwanted problem of a dry cough.
All people are different and react differently to their medications. Because of this, some tablets may cause you problems, while other medicines will cause you no problems at all. Yet your friends and family may have no problems with the medicines that you had problems with, but are unable to take the blood pressure medications that work best for you.
To help you to see if a medicine is causing you an unwanted problem, all reported side-effects of a medicine are listed in the leaflet that comes inside the medicine's box. It is well worth reading this list so that you can then know if your medicine is causing you a problem or not.
Reading this list can be a little terrifying as the company making the medicine has to list every problem that has been reported as a possible side-effect, whether it has occurred just a few times in hundreds of thousands of people or once in every hundred people. Please be reassured that all medicines are tested rigorously to make sure that they are safe and cannot be given to you by your doctor until they have been proved to be so.
All of the groups of medicines commonly used to treat high blood pressure have been used for at least 10 years in the UK to treat many thousands of people and some of them have been used for a lot longer.
If you are worried that your blood pressure medicine may be causing you an unwanted problem, please see I'm not happy with my medicines - what can I do?