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Angiotensin II antagonists, sartans, and the risk of dementia

Author : Pierre Allain Date : 2010-1-24

A study published in the BMJ of January 12th, 2010 compares in patients of more than 65 years the influence of different types of antihypertensive drugs on the incidence of dementias, in particular Alzheimer disease.

The study shows that treatment with angiotensin II receptor antagonists, the "sartan", is accompanied by a reduction in the incidence and the progression of dementias, in particular Alzheimer disease, as compared to treatment with the angiotensin converting-enzyme (ACE) inhibitors, (lisinopril was used as reference) and the other antihypertensive drugs such as calcium antagonists.

The choice of the lisinopril as reference of ACE inhibitors is debatable because lisinopril has a small brain penetration, noncentrally active, and the results could have been different with other drugs with a good brain penetration, centrally active, see this paper.

This effect of inhibitors of the receptors of angiotensin II on the cognitive decline is in favor of their choice for the treatment of hypertension but there are other parameters to take into account.

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