What Is Felodipine Used For?
Felodipine is used for treating high blood pressure in adults. It is a type of calcium channel blocker, which works to decrease diastolic and systolic blood pressure by relaxing the blood vessels. By lowering blood pressure, felodipine can decrease the risk of developing health problems (such as strokes and heart disease), which can occur with long-term high blood pressure. Possible off-label felodipine uses include treating chest pain.
What Is Felodipine Used For?Felodipine (Plendil®) is a prescription medication licensed to treat high blood pressure (hypertension).
A blood pressure reading consists of two numbers -- for example, 120/80. The top number is known as the systolic blood pressure, and the bottom number is the diastolic blood pressure. High blood pressure is defined as an average blood pressure higher than 140/90, with multiple blood pressure readings.
Based on clinical studies, felodipine has been shown to significantly lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure. By lowering blood pressure, felodipine can decrease the risk of developing health problems, such as a stroke, heart disease, or congestive heart failure, which can occur with long-term high blood pressure (see Effects of High Blood Pressure). However, felodipine is not a cure for high blood pressure. Felodipine is approved for use alone or in combination with other blood pressure medications.
How Felodipine WorksFelodipine is part of a class of drugs called calcium channel blockers. It helps to slow down the rate at which calcium moves into your heart and blood vessel walls. This, in turn, helps to relax the blood vessels, which improves blood flow and lowers blood pressure. It also makes it easier for the heart to pump blood.
There are two basic types of calcium channel blockers: dihydropyridine and non-dihydropyridine. The most important difference between the two types is that non-dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers can slow down the heart rate, while dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers do not. Felodipine is a dihydropyridine calcium channel blocker, which means that it does not have an effect on the heart rate.