Treatment with angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) may reduce the risk of fatal and non-fatal CVD events in hemodialysis patients, according to researchers at the Saitama Medical University in Saitama, Japan.


Hiromichi Suzuki, MD, PhD, and colleagues studied 360 patients who were receiving hemodialysis at five university-affiliated dialysis centers two to three times weekly for one to five years. Subjects were randomly assigned to receive an ARB or no ARB (controls). Each group comprised 180 subjects. The patients had a mean age of 60 years.

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Thirty-four (19%) fatal or nonfatal CVD events occurred in the ARB group compared with 59 (33%) in the non-ARB group. After adjusting for age, gender, diabetes, systolic BP, and dialysis center, ARB treatment was independently associated with a significant 49% decreased risk of fatal and nonfatal CVD events, the researchers reported in the American Journal of Kidney Diseases (2008; 52:501-506). F


atal and nonfatal CVD events were defined as the composite of CVD death, MI, stroke, congestive heart failure, coronary artery bypass grafting, or percutaneous coronary intervention.


In addition, 24 deaths (14%) occurred in the ARB group and 38 (31%) occurred in the controls. After adjusting for confounders, the ARB group had a 36% reduced risk of death from any cause.