A study of 20,000 African Americans revealed thatno hypertension medication wins over another at loweringthe risk of death and pressure-related problems,if the patient's goal blood pressure is achieved. Usingdatabases to find trials that assessed the effectivenessof various types of blood pressure medicationsin African Americans, the researchers found thatbeta-blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme(ACE) inhibitors were more effective than a placeboin reducing upper and lower numbers.
The researchers found, in contrast, that all otherclasses of blood pressure drugs were no more effectivethan placebo at lowering blood pressure. Yet, theonly drug class that, without fail, was better than aplacebo in all of these patients was calcium channelblockers. In the Annals of Internal Medicine (October19, 2004), the researchers said that, as long as thegoal blood pressure was reached, the type of drugused did not affect outcomes such as stroke anddeath because of cardiovascular disorders. Thestudy, however, showed some evidence that the riskof diabetes may have increased with diuretics, andcardiovascular events may have increased with ACEinhibitors, compared with other blood pressure drugs.