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Conventional and newer antihypertensive drugs had similar efficacy in elderly people with hypertension

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 QUESTION: In elderly people with hypertension, are newer antihypertensive drugs as effective as conventional antihypertensive drugs for reducing cardiovascular events?


Randomised {allocation concealed*}, blinded (outcome assessors),* controlled trial with 4 year follow up.


312 health centres in Sweden.


6614 patients who were 70 to 84 years of age (mean age 76 y, 67% women) and had hypertension (defined as systolic blood pressure ≥180 mm Hg or diastolic blood pressure ≥105 mm Hg or both). Follow up was 100%.


Patients were allocated to 1 of 3 groups: conventional antihypertensive drugs (atenolol, 50 mg/d; metoprolol, 100 mg/d; pindolol, 5 mg/d; or fixed ratio hydrochlorothiazide, 25 mg/d, and amiloride, 2.5 mg/d) (n=2213); angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) …

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  • Sources of funding: Astra; Merck Sharp and Dohme; Sandoz; Zeneca.

  • For correspondence: Professor L Hansson, Department of Public Health and Social Sciences, University of Uppsala, PO Box 609, 75125 Uppsala, Sweden. Fax +46 18 177973.

  • * See glossary.

  • Information provided by author.