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Single-pill hypertension regimens improve clinical outcomes

A new study links taking a single-pill fixed-dose combination (FDC) treatment for hypertension with a lower risk of adverse clinical outcomes compared to multi-pill regimens, which the authors say could be related to improved adherence.

Most hypertension patients need to take more than one medicine to control their blood pressure, the authors say, with up to 40 per cent of hypertension patients in high-income countries taking multi-pill regimens.

The retrospective cohort study, which is published in PLOS Medicine, looked at 13,350 individuals aged 66 and over in Ontario, with up to five years’ follow up. Outcomes among those on FDC therapy and those taking multiple pills were compared, with the primary outcome measured being a composite of death or hospitalisation for acute myocardial infarction (AMI), heart failure or stroke.

The authors say that “among older adults initiating combination antihypertensive treatment, FDC therapy was associated with a significantly lower risk of composite clinical outcomes, which may be related to better medication adherence.”

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