According to finding of a new study, medical professionals and patients alike are reassured of no link between drugs for lowering blood pressure and increased risk of COVID-19.
Earlier, in mid-March, the American Heart Association, American College of Cardiology, and the Heart Failure Society of America issued a combined statement that urged researchers to address certain gaps in the understanding of risks associated with COVID-19.
Specifically, these institutions pointed out the need to clarify if individuals who take antihypertensive medication are at a higher risk of developing COVID-19, or at the risk of experiencing severe form of the disease.
Meanwhile, according to the World Health Organization, approximately 1.13 billion people worldwide suffer from high blood pressure, for which antihypertensive medications help.
Hence, any indication of the risk of the drug to contribute to develop COVID-19, or severe form of the disease would be a deep concern for medical professionals worldwide.
In the interim, recently, medical examiners from some institutions in New York City in collaboration carried out a study to settle this issue. The research is available for access in The New England Journal of Medicine. The study concludes there is no link between common blood pressure drugs and risk of COVID-19.
Certain Class of Drugs for Hypertension focus of Study
For the study part, researchers focused on a class of drugs for high blood pressure called renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors. Specifically, researchers examined angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, beta-blockers, angiotensin receptor blockers, thiazide diuretics, and calcium channel blockers.
Meanwhile, researchers have been wondering the potential effect of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors on risk of COVID-19. This is because angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors interact with protein ACE2, involved in regulation of blood pressure. On the other hand, recent investigations show role of ACE2 as mediator in entry of SARS-CoV-2 virus in the lung cells.