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Sunday, September 27, 2020

New research: Common heart drugs are safe in Covid-19 patients, trial finds

During the pandemic, there have been fears about how these drugs would impact patients with Covid-19.

By: Explained Desk | New Delhi | September 3, 2020 9:05:00 am
A doctor takes the heart rate and blood oxygenation readings of an asymptomatic Covid-19 patient. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos/Image used for representational purposes)

Heart patients commonly take drugs called ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) to reduce blood pressure and treat heart failure. During the pandemic, there have been fears about how these drugs would impact patients with Covid-19.

Now, a trial has shown that heart patients hospitalised with Covid-19 can safely continue taking ACE inhibitors and ARBs. The trial results were presented on Tuesday in the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress 2020.

The trial, called BRACE CORONA, enrolled 659 patients in Brazil. It tested two strategies: temporarily stopping ACE inhibitor/ARB for 30 days versus continuing ACE inhibitors/ARBs in Covid-19 patients taking these medications.

The primary outcome was number of days alive and out of hospital at 30 days.

The average number of days alive and out of hospital was 21.9 days for patients who stopped ACE inhibitors/ARBs and 22.9 days for patients who continued these medications.

The average ratio of days alive and out of hospital between the suspending and continuing groups was 0.95. The average difference between groups was -1.1 days.

The proportion of patients alive and out of hospital by the end of 30 days in the suspending ACE inhibitor/ARB group was 91.8 per cent versus 95 per cent in the continuing group.

A similar 30-day mortality rate was seen for patients who continued and suspended the ACE inhibitor/ARB (2.8 per cent versus 2.7 per cent).

Source: European Society of Cardiology

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