Blood Pressure Medicine and Type 1

I have been taking an ACE inhibitor to reduce blood pressure for the last few weeks and have been having a terrible time with it. Normally, I can still retain sufficient consciousness to treat myself and recover even if my blood sugar drops to the 20s, but since starting this anti-hypertensive, I become too confused to rescue myself in the 60s, so I have lost a vital protection. Also, even if the blood sugar is hovering around 130, I feel as if I am having a severe low and cease to be able to function. Since I’m taking the drug at the lowest possible dose (2.5 mg/o.d. of Ramipril), I can’t reduce it, but would just have to stop taking it.

There is nothing much in the literature on this, so I’m wondering if anyone else has experienced this? If you research type 1 diabetes and anti-hypertensives, all you get is a lot of articles about whether the drugs lower blood sugar, which is not my problem here.

I’ve been on ACE inhibitors for over a decade, before I became diabetic. Though I wasn’t on the specific one you are on, I didn’t notice any problem like you are mentioning when I did have to start considering the combination of hypertension and diabetes.

That kind of side effect sounds risky. I’d contact my doctor promptly. It might be that even a different ACE inhibitor might give you fewer problems, or a different class of hypertension meds might be warranted. There are many other options available. I wouldn’t put up with that risk for long.


I suspect the reason why Ramipril is causing this loss of function, which is restored as soon as I stop the drug, is because of the well-known side-effect of anti-hypertensives, which is that they can diminish circulation to the brain, causing dizziness, tiredness, inability to concentrate, and other unpleasant symptoms. With reduced cognitive function, my ability to deal with hypoglycemia is similarly diminished.

But why am I getting hypoglycemia symptoms at blood sugars above 100? It could be that the cognitive symptoms of reduced blood pressure are mimicking hypoglycemic effects for me.

Since the symptoms disappear as soon as I stop taking the drug and return when I start it again, I take that as a fairly clear indication that the drug is to blame, and that, at least so far, it is not doing any permanent damage. If taking an anti-hypertensive will extend my life by 3 years but reduce my present quality of life by 50%, as it now does, it would be more cost-effective to stop using it.

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I have problems with Ramipril too and my doctor put me on half of a tablet (2.5mg). I now have less problems with side effects and I think because I am less worried about taking them my bp is much better.

I agree with the others, while I have never used Ramipril, I have used different ACE inhibitors for years with no issue.