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URMC clinical trial tests new regimen for hypertension
Date:4/26/2012

Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center are testing whether different doses of an established blood pressure medication can provide the same benefits as a standard dose in people with mild hypertension, possibly with fewer side effects and at a lower cost. The newly launched clinical trial, funded with a $1.9 million grant from the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, is the first of its kind in the United States.

The study drug, carvedilol (brand name Coreg), is FDA approved and widely used for the treatment of high blood pressure. What researchers hope to learn is how varying amounts of the medication, including doses lower than typically prescribed, affect patients with mild or stage 1 hypertension a systolic pressure (top number) ranging from 140 to 160 mm Hg.

According to hypertension expert and study investigator John D. Bisognano, M.D., Ph.D., people with this early form of the disease are often advised to try lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthier diet and exercising, for six months to a year before initiating drug therapy. For individuals implementing lifestyle modifications who are also considering medical treatment, the trial provides an opportunity to try a safe and effective drug that, even at varying doses, may help bring their blood pressure back to healthy levels.

"It is so ingrained in everyone's mind that we have to have a constant level of medication, but it is possible that if the drug level goes down, the brain may be able to make up for that," said Bisognano, director of Cardiology Outpatient Services who will run the trial with Francisco A. Tausk, M.D., professor in the Departments of Dermatology and Psychiatry and Jan A. Moynihan, Ph.D., Engel Professor in Psychosocial Medicine also in the Department of Psychiatry at the Medical Center. "We may be able to meet the medical need with less medication in this low-risk population and potentially decrease side effects in the process."
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Contact: Emily Boynton
emily_boynton@urmc.rochester.edu
585-273-1757
University of Rochester Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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