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Hypertension. 2008 Jun;51(6):1617-23. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.108.111674. Epub 2008 Apr 21.

Valsartan improves arterial stiffness in type 2 diabetes independently of blood pressure lowering.

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  • 1Cardiovascular Division, King's College London School of Medicine, United Kingdom. j.karalliedde@kcl.ac.uk

Abstract

Increased arterial stiffness, as estimated from aortic pulse wave velocity (Ao-PWV), and albuminuria are independent predictors for cardiovascular disease in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Whether angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), drugs with cardio-renal protective effects, improve Ao-PWV to a greater extent than other equipotent antihypertensive medications remains unclear. After a 4-week washout phase, we compared the effects of valsartan (n=66), an ARB, with that of amlodipine (n=65), a calcium channel blocker on Ao-PWV in 131 T2DM patients with pulse pressure (PP) >or=60 mm Hg and raised albumin excretion rate (AER) in a 24-week randomized, double-blind, parallel group study. Hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) 25 mg/d was added to valsartan 160 mg and amlodipine 5 mg/od uptitrated to 10 mg/od after 4 weeks to ensure equivalent BP control. After 24 weeks brachial and central aortic PP had fallen to a similar extent with attained mean (SD) brachial and central PP of 61.6 (13.6) and 47.3 (14.1) mm Hg in the valsartan/HCTZ group and 61.5 (12.2) and 47.3 (9.9) mm Hg in the amlodipine group, respectively. Ao-PWV showed a significantly greater reduction, mean (95% CI), -0.9 m/s (-1.4 to -0.3) for valsartan/HCTZ compared to amlodipine (P=0.002). AER fell significantly only with Val/HCTZ from 30.8(20.4, 46.5) to 18.2(12.5, 26.3) mcg/min, (P=0.01) with between treatment difference in favor of Val/HCTZ of -15.3mcg/min (P<0.001). Changes in AER and Ao-PWV were not correlated. Valsartan/HCTZ improves arterial stiffness and AER to a significantly greater extent than amlodipine despite similar central and brachial BP control. These 2 effects, which appear independent of each other, may explain the specific cardio-renal protective properties of ARBs.

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