Assignment 1: Pharmacotherapy for Cardiovascular Disorders

Assignment: Pharmacotherapy for Cardiovascular Disorders

As an advanced practice nurse, it is your responsibility to recommend appropriate treatment options for patients with cardiovascular disorders. To ensure the safety and effectiveness of drug therapy, advanced practice nurses must consider aspects that might influence pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes such as medical history, other drugs currently prescribed, and individual patient factors.

Reference: Murphy, S. L., Xu, J., Kochanek, K. D., & Arias, E. (2018). Mortality in the United States, 2017. Retrieved from

To Prepare

  • Review the Resources for this module and consider the impact of potential pharmacotherapeutics for cardiovascular disorders introduced in the media piece.
  • Review the case study assigned by your Instructor for this Assignment.
  • Select one the following factors: genetics, gender, ethnicity, age, or behavior factors.
  • Reflect on how the factor you selected might influence the patient’s pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes.
  • Consider how changes in the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic processes might impact the patient’s recommended drug therapy.
  • Think about how you might improve the patient’s drug therapy plan based on the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic changes. Reflect on whether you would modify the current drug treatment or provide an alternative treatment option for the patient.

By Day 7 of Week 2

Write a 2- to 3-page paper that addresses the following:

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pharmacotherapy for cardiovascular disorder
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Pharmacotherapy for Cardiovascular Disorder

According to Murphy et al. (2019), the leading cause of death in the United States as of 2017 was heart disease accounting for 16,550 deaths per 100,000 standard population.  Additionally, it is predicted that approximately 23.6 million people will die from cardiovascular diseases related to stroke and heart disease by 2030 (WHO, 2021). While cardiovascular diseases pose a high threat to mortality, there is a need to evaluate the risk factors for the disease. One of the most significant risk factors of cardiovascular disorders is behavioral factors mainly related to unhealthy lifestyle choices such as unhealthy diet, excessive use of tobacco and alcohol, and physical inactivity. These habits may result in high blood pressure, obesity, increased blood lipids, overweight, and increased blood glucose.

A study by Interheart shows that smoking, diabetes, psychosocial factors, regular consumption of alcohol, lack of consumption of fruits and vegetables, and physical inactivity contributed to 90% of acute myocardial infarction (Banerjee & Asrress, 2018). Addressing this factor may help gain insights into its effect on the prevalence of cardiovascular diseases and help improve the quality of life across all populations. Specifically, addressing cardiovascular diseases could increase life expectancy by seven years. Behaviors such as smoking, poor nutrition, and lack of exercise lead to high blood pressure, a primary risk factor for cardiovascular diseases such as coronary heart disease, heart failure, heart attack, aorta failure, and deep vein thrombosis conditions.

Nonetheless, taking unhealthy foods with high levels of cholesterol increase the fats build up on the artery wall restricting adequate blood flow to the heart and other critical organs. Additionally, research has found that Americans spend approximately six to eight hours a day seated (Hales et al., 2020). Lack of physical activity increases the risk of stroke and heart attack. Excessive weight in the belly is also a contributing factor to cardiovascular disease. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 42.4% of all adults in the country are obese, an increase from 30.5% in 1999 (Hales et al., 2020). However, the prevention of coronary heart disease in the United States can be achieved by adopting a healthy lifestyle.

While addressing these behavioral factors can improve the quality of life for those at risk of stroke, there is a need to integrate pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. In this regard, drug therapy may be affected by the patient’s lifestyle behavior. Therefore, controlling confounding lifestyle variables could enhance the effectiveness of drugs offered in the therapy sessions. The consistency of lifestyle behavior could also affect how drugs are administrated, either using generalized or standardized protocols.

The patient has been prescribed Glipizide 10 mg PO daily, HCTZ 25 mg daily Atenolol 25 mg PO, daily Hydralazine 25 mg QID, Simvastatin 80 mg daily, Verapamil 180 mg CD daily after being diagnosed with hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and hyperlipidemia. To improve the patient’s drug therapy plan, I could also recommend lifestyle modifications to address the risk factors of cardiovascular disorders. These changes should be obligatory to improve the overall health care outcomes (Chen, 2018).

First, smoking is a significant risk factor for stroke as nicotine strains the heart and compresses the blood vessels. Carbon monoxide also reduces blood oxygen levels, damaging the arteries’ lining (Hales et al., 2020). Therefore, quitting smoking is an effective way to reduce the chances of developing stroke. In this regard, research shows that people who quit smoking by thirty years were not at any risk of having cardiovascular disorders. Second, checking on blood pressure levels at least after two years and cholesterol tests at least after five years can help early diagnose and prevent cardiovascular diseases. In diabetes, an individual may reduce their risk of cardiovascular diseases by having tight blood sugar management. Fourth, eating healthy foods, legumes, nuts, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and avoiding saturated fats and sugary foods can help promote the heart’s health. Lastly, maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding alcohol, and exercising can also help prevent coronary heart disease (Hales et al., 2020).

Dietary changes that can also help treat obesity, a risk factor for stroke, include limiting fats and sugars, reducing calories, consuming more significant food portions with fewer calories to reduce hunger pangs, and eating plant-based foods and lean proteins. Another key to treat obesity is exercising and engaging in physical activity; people with obesity need to have at least 150 minutes of exercise in a week to prevent further weight gain and lose a significant amount of weight (Berthoud & Klein, 2017). Besides, extra movements either in the garden, doing house chores, walking to the stores are recommended to reduce weight.  Behavior modification programs can help in making the necessary lifestyle changes. One has to identify the factors that have contributed to obesity and make behavioral changes to manage weight. Some of these programs include counseling and engaging in support groups.

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pharmacotherapy for cardiovascular disorder
pharmacotherapy for cardiovascular disorder

In some cases, medication may be used to boost weight loss. It is mainly prescribed to people with a BMI of 30 and above and those with a BMI of 27 and has other medical complications (Berthoud & Klein, 2017). However, the medication should be taken along with exercise, diet, and behavioral changes, since it only helps one eat a low-calorie diet by reducing hunger.  For people with a BMI of 40 and above, weight loss surgery is recommended. It limits the amount of food you can take in and decreases the absorption of calories. Incorporating these behavioral changes, and educating the patients on the need to maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating a healthy diet with low calories, fats, and sugars and engaging in physical activities either by walking, aerobic exercises, or doing house chores that require energy, could lead to improved quality of life.


Banerjee, A., & Asrress, K. (2018). Risk factors for cardiovascular disease. Oxford Medicine Online.

Berthoud, H., & Klein, S. (2017). Advances in obesity: Causes, consequences, and therapy. Gastroenterology, 152(7), 1635-1637.

Chen, H., McGowan, E. M., Ren, N., Lal, S., Nassif, N., Shad-Kaneez, F., Qu, X., & Lin, Y. (2018). Nattokinase: A promising alternative in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. Biomarker Insights13, 117727191878513.

Murphy, S. L., Xu, J., Kochanek, K. D., & Arias, E. (2019, June 7). Products – Data briefs – Number 328 – November 2018. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

WHO. (2021, June 11). Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). WHO | World Health Organization.

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