FDA Approves Merck's Cozaar to Lower Hypertension

Cozaar is in a group of drugs called angiotensin II receptor antagonists.

It keeps blood vessels from narrowing, which lowers blood pressure and improves blood flow.

Cozaar is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). It is also used to lower the risk of stroke in certain people with heart disease.

Cozaar is used to slow long-term kidney damage in people with type 2 diabetes who also have high blood pressure.

This drug is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension) and to help protect the kidneys from damage due to diabetes. It is also used to lower the risk of strokes in patients with high blood pressure and an enlarged heart. This drug works by blocking the hormone angiotensin thereby relaxing blood vessels, causing them to widen. High blood pressure reduction helps prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems.

Cozaar belongs to the class of drugs known as angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs), also called antihypertensives or angiotensin II receptor antagonists, which are prescribed to treat hypertension (high blood pressure). Cozaar and other ARBs treat hypertension by blocking certain chemicals that restrict the flow of blood through the body.

Cozaar (losartan potassium tablets), a once-daily prescription medication that represents the first new class of medicines for the treatment of high blood pressure in more than a decade, has been cleared for marketing by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Merck & Co. Inc., announced Tuesday.
Cozaar is the first in a new class of effective antihypertensive drugs called Angiotensin-II (A-II) receptor blockers. Cozaar lowers high blood pressure by blocking A-II. A hormone, A-II causes narrowing of the blood vessels and salt and water retention by the kidneys. Cozaar blocks A-II, which resulted in gradual, smooth, 24-hour blood pressure reduction in clinical studies, with a low incidence of side effects.

As the first in a new class, Cozaar is an important milestone in the treatment of hypertension. It offers effective treatment with an excellent side effect profile. Further, its availability as once-daily dosing for most patients is important because that may help patients remain on therapy.”

— Edward M. Scolnick, M.D., president, Merck Research Laboratories