October 23, 2010

Coughing Related to Heart Disease

Posted in Heart disease tips tagged , , , , , at 10:01 pm by keepyourhearthealthy

So, what does a cough have to do with heart disease?  Directly, nothing.  But indirectly there may be something you are taking for heart disease that causes a cough.  People with heart disease are given a standard group of medicines to help reduce the chances of further heart problems.  Some people may be prescribed an ACE-inhibitor along with the usual aspirin, beta-blocker and statin.  ACE-inhibitors such as lisinopril, Altace, ramipril and benazepril can cause a chronic, dry cough in up to 39% of patients.  The cough sometimes manifests just as a frequent need to clear your throat.  Other times the cough may be outright deep but nothing comes up.  The current recommended treatment for a dry cough caused by ACE-inhibitors includes switching to a similar medicine called an ARB. 

If you have a small but bothersome cough that just won’t go away, discuss the medicines you are taking with your cardiologist.  Some people used to prefer only ACE-inhibitors because the alternative ARB’s were much more expensive.  Fortunately, Cozaar is now available as generic losartan.  The choice is there…you just have to speak with your doctor for a prescription!

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