What are nitrate medications?

Nitrate medications are drugs administered to relieve chest pain (angina) that is associated with narrowed arteries to the heart that are starving the muscle of blood and oxygen. Angina is the body’s response to oxygen deprivation. It is a serious sign that the heart muscle is in danger of being damaged, or even dying. These drugs allow the arteries to the heart to expand, restoring blood flow and alleviating pain. Patients who have had previous heart attacks or angina may be prescribed nitrate medications.

Kynthia James
Critical Care Nursing

Nitrates also known as nitroglycerin are a type of medications that is used to treat chest pay or angina. The medications dilate the blood vessels that pump blood to the heart and as result decrease chest pains.

Continue Learning about Nitrate

How do nitrate medications help treat angina?
Audrey K. Chun, MDAudrey K. Chun, MD
Nitrate medications decrease angina pain and shortness of breath by relaxing blood vessels, enab...
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What are nitrates for coronary artery disease?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
Nitrate therapy relaxes the coronary arteries. This improves blood flow and relieves angina. Nitrogl...
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Why are nitrates recommended for coronary artery disease management?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
If a beta blocker cannot be used or has unacceptable side effects, a long-acting nitrate is sometime...
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What should I know before taking nitrate therapy for CAD?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
If you have systolic blood pressure below 90 mm Hg, you should not take a nitrate. If you have seve...
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