Why some blood pressure meds are linked to higher suicide risk

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Are you taking medicine for high blood pressure, chronic kidney disease, heart failure, or diabetes?

If so, a recent study is sounding an alarm bell you might want to hear.

The study says that certain blood pressure medications might be linked to a higher risk of suicide.

What Did the Study Discover?

Researchers at St. Michael’s Hospital dug through Canadian health records. They found 964 people who ended their own lives within 100 days of getting a new prescription.

These folks were taking either angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) or ACE inhibitors, two common types of blood pressure meds.

What’s surprising? People on ARBs were 63% more likely to die by suicide compared to those on ACE inhibitors.

Why ARBs Might Be Risky

Both ARBs and ACE inhibitors work on a hormone called angiotensin II, which makes your blood vessels tighten up and raises your blood pressure.

But they do it in different ways: ARBs block the action of this hormone, while ACE inhibitors reduce how much of it your body makes.

The scientists think that ARBs might increase levels of this hormone in the brain. Higher levels could be linked to mood disorders, which might, in turn, lead to suicidal thoughts and actions.

But don’t jump to conclusions just yet. Some people in the study were also taking other meds like antidepressants, so more research is needed to pin down what’s really going on.

Should You Be Concerned?

The research team suggests that if you’re worried, you might want to consider switching to ACE inhibitors.

However, don’t make any changes without talking to your doctor first. Your doctor can help weigh the pros and cons of your current medication and advise on any changes.

The Bigger Picture on High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is not just a number on a gauge; it’s a serious health problem. Uncontrolled high blood pressure can lead to other big issues like heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure.

So it’s crucial to get your blood pressure under control. But this study suggests you should also be aware of other potential risks, like the one this research has brought to light.

To sum it up, if you’re taking ARBs, you might want to have a chat with your healthcare provider. It’s all about finding the right balance for your health, both mental and physical.

The study, led by Muhammad Mamdani and his team, was published in JAMA Network Open. If you’re interested in this topic, you might also want to look into other studies about high blood pressure, its causes, and possible treatments.

If you care about blood pressure, please read studies about blood pressure drug that may increase risk of sudden cardiac arrest, and these teas could help reduce high blood pressure.

For more information about mental health, please see recent studies about how dairy foods may influence depression risk, and results showing Omega-3 fats may help reduce depression.

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