Recent research has shown that stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S.
Among all people expressing a stroke, about 75% are first-time stroke patients.
It is known that many chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol levels, can increase stroke risk.
Controlling these health conditions could help reduce the risk.
In a recent study led by McMaster University in Canada, researchers found that combining drugs lowering blood pressure with drugs that lower cholesterol levels could cut first-time strokes by 44%.
The team analyzed data of 12,705 participants from 21 countries. The people’s health conditions were followed for about 5 years.
The researchers found that drugs for lowering blood pressure or cholesterol alone could reduce stroke risk. But when the drugs were combined together, their prevention benefit increased.
The blood pressure drugs used in the study were candesartan and hydrochlorothiazide, and the cholesterol drug was rosuvastatin.
The team found that for people with very high blood pressure, taking 16 milligrams of candesartan plus 12.5 milligrams of hydrochlorothiazide daily could reduce stroke risk by 42%.
They suggest that it is important to develop a single pill that produces the same effects as taking multiple pills. This could make it easier to use for patients who need to reduce stroke risk.
The leader of the study is Jackie Bosch, Ph.D., McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
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