Atacand is a prescription medication that is used to treat heart conditions such as high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. Although Atacand is not a cure for these specific heart conditions, it can lower blood pressure and increase the efficiency of the heart. This medication is usually taken on a daily basis, with the specific dosage being based on the patient's medical history and other factors. As with any drug, Atacand may cause side effects, such as dizziness and back pain.
What Is Atacand?
Atacand® (candesartan cilexetil) is a prescription medicine that has been licensed to treat several conditions related to the heart and blood vessels. It is part of a class of drugs called angiotensin II receptor blockers, or ARBs for short.
Atacand has not been approved for use in children.
(Click Atacand Uses for more information on what Atacand is used for, including possible off-label uses.)
How Does Atacand Work?
Atacand is part of a class of drugs called angiotensin II receptor blockers. As the name implies, Atacand blocks angiotensin II receptors. This decreases the effectiveness of a chemical known as angiotensin II, which normally causes blood vessels to narrow (constrict). By blocking the effects of angiotensin II, Atacand causes blood vessels to relax, which can lower blood pressure.
By helping blood vessels relax, Atacand also increases the efficiency of the heart. This means that the heart does not have to work as hard and more blood can be pumped out to the rest of the body. Both of these effects are helpful for a person with congestive heart failure.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Atacand [package insert]. Wilmington, DE: AstraZeneca LP;2012 April.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed July 19, 2013.
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