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Embargoed for Release: May 1, 2006, 4:00 PM EDT

NHLBI Communications Office
nhlbi_news@nhlbi.nih.gov
301-496-4236
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Embargoed for Release: May 1, 2006, 4:00 PM EDT

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Media Availability: Diuretics Better than Other High Blood Pressure Medications in Preventing Heart Failure

Diuretic medications are more effective than other high blood pressure medications in preventing heart failure, at least in the short term, according to new data from a National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute clinical study. High blood pressure is the leading risk factor for heart failure, a condition where the heart is weakened and does not effectively pump blood throughout the body.

"Role of Diuretics in the Prevention of Heart Failure," will be published in the May 9 online edition of Circulation.

Dr. Jeffrey Cutler, NHLBI project director for the study, which is called the Antihypertensive and Lipid-Lowering Treatment to Prevent Heart Attack Trial (ALLHAT), is available for interviews. In the first year of treatment, participants who received ACE-inhibitors or calcium channel blockers were two times more likely to be hospitalized or die from heart failure than those who were taking a diuretic. In later years, the differences between the study groups were reduced, such that the rate of developing serious heart failure resulting in death or hospitalization was about the same for participants taking ACE inhibitors or diuretics, and those on calcium channel blockers had a 22 percent higher risk.

To schedule interviews, contact the NHLBI Communications Office at 301-496-4236.

Part of the National Institutes of Health, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) plans, conducts, and supports research related to the causes, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of heart, blood vessel, lung, and blood diseases; and sleep disorders. The Institute also administers national health education campaigns on women and heart disease, healthy weight for children, and other topics. NHLBI press releases and other materials are available online at: www.nhlbi.nih.gov.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH)—The Nation's Medical Research Agency—includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and it investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit http://www.nih.gov.

For the Media

NHLBI Communications Office
nhlbi_news@nhlbi.nih.gov
301-496-4236
Ask for press officer on duty

Related Health Topics

Heart Failure

High Blood Pressure

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