Objective: To review the available literature on the effects of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs), angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs), and calcium channel blockers (CCBs) or combinations of these agents on stroke outcomes in hypertensive patients. Data sources: A Medline search was conducted using the search terms stroke and antihypertensives, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, or angiotensin II receptor blockers from 1985 to August 17, 2009. Study selection: Randomized controlled clinical trials with at least 400 randomized patients were selected if at least one of the treatment arms used a CCB, ACEI, or ARB to evaluate stroke outcomes in hypertensive patients. Data synthesis: The prevalence of stroke is high in the United States, accounting for approximately 150,000 deaths per year. Early identification and treatment of hypertension to quickly achieve blood pressure reduction is critical in the prevention of stroke. Many trials have provided evidence that CCBs, ACEIs, and ARBs are effective in stroke prevention. Most patients require two or more antihypertensive drugs to achieve blood pressure goals. Because of their complementary actions, combination antihypertensive therapy with a renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) blocker and a CCB may help reduce stroke incidence to a greater extent than either of the monotherapies. Conclusion: A growing body of clinical trial data suggest that aggressive combination antihypertensive therapy, including a RAAS blocker and CCB, may help reduce stroke incidence. Fixed-dose combination therapy is an important consideration in optimizing blood pressure control and patient adherence to therapy in stroke prevention.
- Antihypertensive agents
- Blood pressure
- Stroke prevention and treatment
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pharmacology (nursing)