Internist Questions Hypertension

Can there be contradictions in diabetes and blood pressure medications?

My mom has issues with both hypertension and diabetes, and I've noticed that her medications has made her extremely drowsy. Could these be side effects brought on by the medications she's on?

4 Answers

I traditionally tell my patients any medication can cause any side effects.

There are certain blood pressure medications we try to use on diabetic patients. The class of these medications are ACE inhibitors ARB. They are traditionally very well tolerated and have a little likelihood of side effects. Notoriously we try to avoid beta blockers in our diabetic patients. If she is on the class of medication, this could be the culprit.

She should never take it upon herself to stop any of her medications without first consulting her doctor.

Good luck
All medications have potential risk and side effects. Yes, drowsiness is a known side effect to many medications. I strongly encourage patients to talk to their doctors about any symptoms they may be having. While it could be side effects, it could also be something else, potentially serious.
You can call the pharmacy where she got her drugs/prescriptions filled (since the names are not provided) and they can run a computer check to see if there are any specific drug-drug interactions for the meds she's taking. In addition, you should also ask her doctor to make sure she is on the correct meds.

Yes, many diabetes medications and blood pressure medications have side effects that can contribute to drowsiness, although that symptom is very non-specific. I would make sure that her blood sugar is not too low by testing it at home when the drowsiness occurs. If her blood sugar is between 70 and 90 at the time tested, she should be given a small amount of orange or apple juice to bring it up. You also may want to get a home blood pressure device. If your mother's blood pressure I dropping too low on the medication, she may experience dizziness/drowsiness and may need to take less. I would inform the prescribing doctor of your mother's symptoms, so that they can adjust things further.