Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Beta-blockers and stroke -- new insights into their use for older people

31.08.2009
Research conducted at Leicester reveals effects of blood pressure drugs on cardiovascular disease

A University of Leicester-led study may have uncovered the reason why Beta-blockers are less effective at preventing stroke in older people with high blood pressure, when compared to other drugs for high blood pressure.

The research, carried out by Bryan Williams, Professor of Medicine at the University of Leicester, and his colleague Dr. Peter Lacy, has been published in the prestigious Journal of the American College of Cardiology and has been cited on the MDLinx.com site as currently the world's number one leading finding in its field.

Professor Williams' research shows that lowering heart rate in older people, as Beta blockers do, can have a potentially detrimental effect on central aortic pressures (pressures in the large arteries close to the heart).

He commented: "Such findings can help define the template for optimal treatment strategies and highlight why new methods to estimate central aortic pressures are providing new insights into the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease and how new drugs can be tailored to limit the damage.

"Leicester is acknowledged as one of the leading centres in the world in this field of research."

This study used analysis of the pulse wave measured at the wrist to estimate pressures in the large artery near to the heart, in people with high blood pressure. It shows that reducing heart rate in older people with high blood pressure can result in a higher than expected pressure in the large arteries.

This may be the reason why drugs such as Beta-blockers, a widely used drug to treat high blood pressure, have been shown to be less effective than other treatments at preventing stroke. In 2006, NICE recommended that Beta-blockers should no longer be used as a routine treatment for high blood pressure because they appeared somewhat less effective than other types of blood pressure lowering drugs at reducing the risk of stroke, especially in older people.

Professor Williams, who is also consultant physician with the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, suggests that the present study provides important insights into the mechanism. "There is no doubt that by better understanding of how modern drugs work in reducing the risk of stroke and heart disease, we will be able to continually refine treatments for the future," he said.

Should patients taking Beta-blockers stop them? Professor Williams emphasised: "No they should definitely not stop them. Beta-blockers are prescribed for a number of medical conditions, including angina and heart disease and in this context they are very beneficial.

"The new study is specifically exploring the reasons why Beta-blockers or other drugs that lower heart rate may be less effective at preventing stroke than some of the other drugs we use to lower blood pressure."

The MDLinx.com website claims to include the world's most up-to-date index of articles of interest to physicians and healthcare professionals. Professor Williams' article, 'Impact of heart rate on central aortic pressures and hemodynamics: Analysis from the CAFE (Conduit Artery Function Evaluation Study: CAFE-Heart Rate' was on the HeartLinx site and can be seen on: http://www.mdlinx.com/heartlinx/news-article.cfm/2838447.

Notes to Editors: For more information on this please contact Bryan Williams MD, FRCP, FAHA, Professor of Medicine, Department of Cardiovascular Sciences, University of Leicester, tel +44 (0) 116 252 3182, email bw17@le.ac.uk

Bryan Williams | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.le.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht 'Living bandages': NUST MISIS scientists develop biocompatible anti-burn nanofibers
16.02.2018 | National University of Science and Technology MISIS

nachricht New process allows tailor-made malaria research
16.02.2018 | Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Contacting the molecular world through graphene nanoribbons

19.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

When Proteins Shake Hands

19.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

Cells communicate in a dynamic code

19.02.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>