Diabetes Self-Management Articles

These articles cover a wide range of subjects, from the most basic aspects of diabetes care to the nitty-gritty specifics.

Links not loading properly?

Some of our pages use Portable Document Format (PDF) files, which require Adobe Acrobat Reader. To download Acrobat Reader for free, visit www.adobe.com.

Sign up for our weekly e-mail newsletter and receive a FREE GIFT! Enter your e-mail below.

Learn more

Learn more about diabetes

Links to help you learn more about diabetes.

Ask a diabetes expert
Other diabetes resources
Browse article topics


ACE Inhibitors

A class of medicine usually used to treat high blood pressure. Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors also appear to protect people with diabetes from diabetic nephropathy (kidney disease).

People with diabetes are especially prone to hypertension (defined as a blood pressure level of 140/90 mm Hg or greater). Some 20% to 60% of individuals with diabetes have high blood pressure. Hypertension increases their risk not only of heart disease and stroke, but also of peripheral vascular disease, diabetic retinopathy, diabetic nephropathy, and possibly diabetic neuropathy. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) currently recommends a target blood pressure level of under 130/80 mm Hg in people with diabetes.

The ADA recommends a number of different measures for lowering blood pressure, including weight loss, sodium restriction, and exercise. When these measures aren’t enough, the addition of one or more medicines is warranted. There are several different classes of blood pressure drugs, including angiotensin-receptor blockers (ARBs), diuretics, beta blockers, and ACE inhibitors. Overall, drug therapy has been shown to substantially decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetic retinopathy, and diabetic nephropathy.

ACE inhibitors may have a special advantage in terms of slowing the progression of diabetic nephropathy. Research findings show that ACE inhibitors can slow the progression of kidney disease to a greater degree than other antihypertensive drugs that lower blood pressure by a similar amount and that they may be able to protect the kidneys even in people with diabetes whose blood pressure levels are in the normal range. This suggests that ACE inhibitors protect the kidneys by mechanisms other than just blood pressure control.

Currently, the ADA recommends ACE inhibitors for people with high blood pressure and microalbuminuria or clinical albuminuria (clinical markers of kidney disease). The ADA also recommends that ACE inhibitors be considered for people over 55 with or without high blood pressure but with another cardiovascular risk factor (such as a history of cardiovascular disease, abnormal blood lipid levels, microalbuminuria, or smoking).

ACE inhibitors include quinapril (Accupril), perindopril (Aceon), ramipril (Altace), captopril (Capoten), benazepril (Lotensin), trandolapril (Mavik), fosinopril (Monopril), lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril), moexipril (Univasc), and enalapril (Vasotec). Pregnant women should not take ACE inhibitors.



More articles on Diabetes Definitions



Statements and opinions expressed on this Web site are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the publishers or advertisers. The information provided on this Web site should not be construed as medical instruction. Consult appropriate health-care professionals before taking action based on this information.



FDA Approves New Oral Drug for Type 2 Diabetes
On August 1, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the oral diabetes drug Jardiance... Blog

New SGLT Drugs Coming
SGLT1 and 2 are proteins that move glucose out of the intestines and kidneys. Blocking them... Blog

Hypertension and Diabetes: Evil Twins
How is your blood pressure? Studies show that high blood pressure (also known as hypertension... Blog

What do I need to do to keep my blood glucose levels within target range? Get tip