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Polypill improves adherence in established CVD

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The polypill concept could improve adherence to medication in patients with – or at high risk - of heart disease, say UK researchers.

While much of the debate over the polypill has focused on its potential to reduce CV risk in otherwise healthy middle-aged patients, researchers at Imperial College London have looked at two polypill formulations versus usual care in 2004 patients with established CVD or at risk of CVD.

The two formulations contained either:

  • 75mg aspirin, 40mg simvastatin, 10mg lisinopril, and 50mg atenolol or
  • 75mg aspirin, 40mg simvastatin, 10mg lisinopril, and 12.5mg hydrochlorothiazide.

After 15 months follow up adherence in the fixed-dose combination group was 86% overall compared to 65% in the usual care group.

The effect was most pronounced in those with poor adherence at baseline- at the end of the study 23% of those on usual care were adherent compared to 77% of those on a fixed-dose combination.

The paper is published today in the Lancet.

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