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Calcium Channel Blockers (Mechanism of Action)

πŸ’Š Calcium channel blockers (CCBs) are used in the treatment of many cardiovascular conditions including hypertension and angina. They are divided into subclasses, non-dihydropyridines, and dihydropyridines and differ by their pharmacokinetic properties, clinical uses, response, and selectivity. ⁠
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πŸ’Š The name of this class, calcium channel blockers, hints at its mechanism of action – inhibits the entry of calcium into cells of the cardiac and peripheral vascular smooth muscles. ⁠
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πŸ—’οΈ Calcium entry into L-type channels of cardiac and peripheral vascular cells is needed for them to contract or constrict more strongly. ⁠
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πŸ—’οΈ By blocking calcium entry, calcium channel blockers cause:⁠
πŸ‘‰πŸ» peripheral vascular smooth muscle relaxation (decreases blood pressure)⁠
πŸ‘‰πŸ» decreased myocardial contractility (decrease myocardial demand making them effective in angina)⁠
πŸ‘‰πŸ» decrease heart rate and conduction velocity (useful in arrhythmias). ⁠