Diltiazem and atenolol in essential hypertension: Additivity of effects on blood pressure and cardiac conduction with combination therapy

Anne L. Tonkin, Lindon M.H. Wing, Andrew E. Russell, Malcolm J. West, Alexandra J.C. Bune, Margaret J. Morris, Michael D. Cain, John Chalmers

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14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In 15 patients with mild to moderate essential hypertension, the effects of diltiazem (120 mg twice daily) were compared with those of atenolol (50 mg once daily), the two drugs in combination, and placebo in a randomized double-blind cross-over study with treatment phases of 4 weeks duration. Blood pressure was reduced In the active treatment phases (supine blood pressure: diltiazem, 172/92 mmHg; atenolol, 172/92 mmHg; diltiazem plus atenolol, 164/88 mmHg; pooled estimate of s.e.m. by analysis of variance = 3/1) compared with placebo (180/101 mmHg). Factorial analysis confirmed fully additive antihypertensive effects of the drugs in combination. The time interval from the beginning of the P wave to the beginning of the QRS complex (P-R interval) was longer during combination therapy (0.184 s) compared with either diltiazem (0.175 s) or atenolol (0.174 s) alone, or placebo (0.164 s); s.e.m. by analysis of variance = 0.003. No clinically significant conduction disturbances occurred. Plasma atrial natriuretic peptide was elevated by atenolol but not diltiazem. Thus, in subjects with uncomplicated essential hypertension, diltiazem and atenolol had equal antihypertensive efficacy when used alone, and fully additive effects in combination, on both blood pressure and cardiac conduction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1015-1019
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Hypertension
Volume8
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1990
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Atenolol
  • Blood pressure
  • Calcium channel blockers
  • Cardiac conduction
  • Diltiazem

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