Cardiovascular Drugs
  1. Beta Blockers
  2. ACE Inhibitors
  3. Angiotensin II Receptor Blockers (ARBs)
  4. Adenosine
  5. Atropine
  6. Amiodarone
  7. DHP Calcium Channel Blockers
  8. Non-DHP Calcium Channel Blockers
  9. Clonidine
  10. Clopidogrel
  11. Digoxin
  12. Dopamine
  13. Epinephrine
  14. Hydralazine
  15. Loop Diuretics
  16. Nitroglycerin
  17. Norepinephrine
  18. Spironolactone
  19. Statins
  20. Thiazide Diuretics


Hydralazine is a vasodilating drug that works to lower blood pressure in order to treat severe hypertension. An important side effect is reflex tachycardia, which is why hydralazine is often administered with beta blockers. The patient’s heart rate and blood pressure should be monitored before every dose of hydralazine.

Key Points

  • Mechanism
    • Vasodilator
      • Relaxes the blood vessels, allowing for vasodilation and thus lowering the blood pressure
    • Clinical Use
      • Severe hypertension, acute onset
        • Hypertension with preeclampsia
        • Hypertensive crisis
      • Heart failure
        • Used in combination with a nitrate
    • Side Effects and Adverse Reactions
      • Hypotension
        • Reflex tachycardia
          • Often given in conjunction with beta blockers to prevent against reflex tachycardia
          • Can commonly lead to palpitations
          • Heart rate and blood pressure should be monitored before every administration
        • Dizziness
      • Hepatotoxicity
      • Headache
      • GI distress
        • Nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, anorexia
        • GI bleeding