Angiotensin receptor blockers, ARBs

Angiotensin receptor antagonists, angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) or simply sartans are antihypertensives or blood pressure lowering drugs. They are also indicated in heart failure and diabetic nephropathy (kidney disease in diabetes). These agents work by antagonizing the effect of the enzyme angiotensin II and are an alternative to ACE inhibitors. Your GP or Consultant will recommend ARBs if you get troublesome dry cough with ACE inhibitors.

Candesartan, eprosartan, losartan, valsartan and telmisartan are some examples of ARBs. Angiotensin receptor antagonists may cause headache, mild dizziness and hyperkalaemia (high level of potassium in blood due to kidney impairment).