Food and Drug Administration approves additional drug to lower blood pressure

Monday, April 29th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) _ The Food and Drug Administration has approved an additional drug for the treatment of high blood pressure.

Approval of Benicar, developed by Sankyo Pharma Inc. of Parsippany, N.J., was announced Friday.

It is the latest drug in a type known as angiotensin II receptor blockers. These drugs interfere with the activity of angiotensin, a peptide that causes blood vessels to constrict, increasing blood pressure.

Benicar is expected to be available next month, the company said. The dose is one pill daily and the wholesale price will be $1.05 per pill.

In clinical trials the only side effect noted was dizziness, affecting about 3 percent of the patients.

Benicar is also known by the chemical name olmesartan medoxomil.