Drug Therapy

Adrenergic agents: clinical trials and experiences

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Beta-adrenergic blocking agents constitute first-line therapy for hypertension in many countries of the world. Comparative trials have been extensive in duration and have included large numbers of patients. Still, the desired cardioprotective effect of beta blockers has yet to be established. Their antiatherosclerotic effect has been noted in several animal experiments. Confirming evidence is needed before the clinical relevance of this effect can be evaluated, but these studies point to a potential therapeutic effect that may be immensely important in the future. Beta blockers can reverse left ventricular hypertrophy secondary to hypertension, but it remains to be shown that regression of left ventricular hypertrophy will reduce the associated risks.



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