- ACE inhibitors like Enalapril work on the blood veins and are used to keep all blood veins opened and to prevent the decreased size or the restriction on veins, especially in case of a heart attack. When the blood pressure declines due to a heart attack (or blood loss due to injury), the body shuts down all veins except those to the heart, head, and kidneys. Eventually-through release of enzymes, the angiotensin is created that shuts down all veins except the crucial ones. EXCEPT that in doing so it raises blood pressure and a damaged heart such as an HCM heart cannot handle the same volume of blood running through a more narrow channel which makes the heart circulate it faster and therefore pump harder to do so. The ACE inhibitor inhibits the ACE properties from taking place, allowing the blood veins to remain open.
Atenolol is a beta blocker which doesn't work on the blood veins but works instead on the heart. The result is much the same-no hypertension and an easing of the pumping of the heart.
An HCM cat may need both. Mine is on both as well as lasix, Plavix, and spironolactone, and now aspirin.
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