Single pill could reduce risk of cardiovascular disease by over 80%
- By: Krishna Chinttapalli
A combination pill containing six different drugs could reduce mortality from strokes and myocardial infarctions by 88%, according to a recent study in the BMJ (2003;326:1419-22). Dubbed the “polypill,” it would be intended as a preventive measure and be taken once daily by everyone over 55 years of age and younger people with a clinical history of cardiovascular disease.
The researchers, Nicholas Wald and Malcolm Law, from Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry, London, performed a series of meta-analyses of existing data on the effects of different types of drugs used for the management of strokes and cardiovascular disease. From this they have calculated that the optimal formulation of a single pill comprises low dose aspirin, one statin, folic acid, and three blood pressure lowering drugs of different classes at half the standard dose. These drugs would target four different risk factors, namely platelet function, low density lipoprotein cholesterol,