A recent study from the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center found a COVID-19 survival benefit linked to the use of an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE-I), an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB), or metformin for hospitalized patients.
ACE inhibitors are medications that help relax the veins and arteries to lower blood pressure.
ARBs are used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure. They are also used for chronic kidney disease and prescribed following a heart attack.
Metformin is used to control blood glucose (sugar) levels in people who have type 2 diabetes.
The researchers examined patterns of ACE-I, ARB, beta-blocker, metformin, famotidine, and remdesivir use and mortality among 9,532 hospitalized patients with COVID-19 infection.
They found that discontinuation of an ACE-I was linked to a higher risk for death, while the risk for death was reduced in association with initiating or continuous ACE-I use.
Strong links of similar direction and magnitude were seen with ARB and metformin use.
These findings not only support the continuation of ACE-I, ARB, and metformin medication among hospitalized patients with COVID-19 but suggest benefits for initiation in patients with indications for therapy.
The researchers also found evidence consistent with the benefits of the same strategy in patients with COVID-19 who are not hospitalized.
The study was published in The BMJ and conducted by Arthur W. Wallace et al.
For more information about health, please see recent studies about the cause of post-COVID syndromes, and results showing COVID-19 is not just a respiratory illness, it can cause strokes too.
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