Common high blood pressure drugs do not increase COVID-19 risk

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While the COVID-19 pandemic left the world searching for answers, one healthcare concern is about the use of certain high blood pressure drugs, and whether the drugs posed increased COVID-19 risks.

In a new study, researchers found that there was no increased risk of COVID-19 diagnosis, hospitalization, or complications for users of either angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) to treat high blood pressure.

They tested more than 1.1 million patients who use high blood pressure drugs.

The findings support recent clinical recommendations that patients should not discontinue ACE inhibitor or ARB therapy due to concerns of increased COVID-19 risk.

The research was conducted by a team at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and elsewhere.

While other studies have generated similar findings recently, this study is the most comprehensive to date of COVID-19 susceptibility risks for blood pressure drug users.

The researchers examined electronic health records from a trio of data sources from the United States and Spain to conduct a review study of ACE, ARB, calcium channel blocker (CCB), and thiazide diuretic (THZ) users.

The findings also showed no clinical reason to switch from an ARB to an ACE inhibitor to minimize COVID-19 risk.

Powered by open-source tools, state-of-the-art analytical methods, and global collaboration, these findings provide robust and reproducible real-world evidence.

One author of the study is Marc A. Suchard, a professor at UCLA.

The study is published in The Lancet Digital Health.

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