WebMD (January 12, 2010): Hypertension Drugs May Cut Alzheimer's Risk

Publication Date: 
Tue, 01/12/2010

Drugs commonly used to treat high blood pressure and heart disease may reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests.

Boston University scientists, reporting in the journal BMJ, say a class of high blood pressure drugs called angiotensin receptor blockers is associated with a striking decrease in the risk of occurrence and progression of dementia.

The researchers, using information from a U.S. Department of Health System Veterans Affairs database of more than 5 million people, examined records of more than 800,000 predominantly male patients 65 or older.

The researchers compared the patients in groups that included those using an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB): those using an ACE inhibitor called lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril); and those using other blood pressure/heart disease medicatiosn (excluding statins).

Angiotensin receptor blockers include candesartan (Atacand), irbesartan (Avapro), losartan (Cozaar), and valsartan (Diovan).

There were no differences in average blood pressure among the three groups.

www.webmd.com/alzheimers/news/20100112/hypertension-drugs-may-cut-alzheimers-risk