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January 4, 2001

Complications, Other Medications

Question from Kingsport, Tennessee, USA:

I have type 2 diabetes. I just had to change doctors because of insurance, and the doctor put me on an ACE inhibitor. I have asked why, but have not received any answers. I do not have high blood pressure. Is there something this medication is used for other than blood pressure? I heard they sometimes give it for the treatment of the urinary tract.

Answer:

You’ve asked a good question and I hope, by now, you have heard from your physician as well. ACE inhibitors are used for the treatment of kidney disease as well as blood pressure. Some physicians also order the medication as a preventive treatment when neither blood pressure or kidney problems are present. There is good research supporting the use of ACE inhibitors in the treatment of these conditions, but no concrete evidence supporting using these drugs in prevention of problems that have not occurred. I encourage you to discuss your kidney test results, i.e., microalbumin, creatinine, and 24-hour urine for protein, with your physician to gain a better understanding as to why the medication was ordered.

KS