What Is Candesartan Used For?
Candesartan for Congestive Heart Failure
Congestive heart failure (CHF) is a condition where the heart cannot pump enough blood throughout the body. It does not mean that your heart has stopped or that it is about to stop working. It means that your heart is not able to pump blood the way that it should. This can lead to symptoms of CHF that include shortness of breath; swelling of the feet, ankles, or lower legs; and rapid weight gain, to name a few (see Symptoms of Congestive Heart Failure for more information).
For people with congestive heart failure, candesartan decreases blood pressure and makes the heart more efficient, which allows more blood to be pumped from the heart. Because of these effects, candesartan has been shown to decrease the hospitalizations and loss of life due to congestive heart failure. However, candesartan does not cure congestive heart failure.
How Does Candesartan Work?Candesartan is part of a class of drugs called angiotensin II receptor blockers, or ARBs for short. As the names implies, candesartan blocks angiotensin II receptors. This decreases the effectiveness of a chemical known as angiotensin II, which normally causes blood vessels to narrow (constrict). By blocking the effects of angiotensin II, candesartan causes blood vessels to relax, which can lower blood pressure.
Candesartan Uses in Children
Candesartan has been approved to treat high blood pressure in children as young as one year old. However, it is not approved to treat congestive heart failure in children.
Off-Label Candesartan UsesOn occasion, a healthcare provider may recommend candesartan for treating a condition other than those listed above. This is called an "off-label" use. At this time, there are no universally accepted off-label candesartan uses.