Alpha-blocker medicines relax smooth muscle in the body. Smooth
muscle controls the blood vessels, intestines, bladder and urinary tract, and
other involuntary actions in the body.
Alpha-blockers can be used
for many problems, including:
Prostate problems. These medicines can relax
the smooth muscle in the prostate and urethra, which lets urine flow out of the
body more easily.
Kidney stones. These medicines can relax the
smooth muscle in the ureters (the tubes that move urine between the kidneys and
the bladder) and make them wider, which can help a kidney stone pass more
High blood pressure. These medicines can relax the smooth
muscle in the blood vessels and make them wider, which can help lower blood
Examples of alpha-blocker
medicines include alfuzosin (Uroxatral), doxazosin (Cardura), silodosin
(Rapaflo), tamsulosin (Flomax), and terazosin (Hytrin).
effects of alpha-blockers include:
Dizziness, especially when standing
Alpha-blockers are also called alpha-adrenergic
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & J. Curtis Nickel, MD, FRCSC - Urology
The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.