Are High-Risk Hypertensive Patients Prescribed Concomitant Statin Therapy? Prescription Patterns in Patients Initiating Antihypertensive Therapy in the United States (Abstract 1021-251)
Studies show that patients with high blood pressure and other cardiac risk factors, including high cholesterol, heart disease and diabetes, can benefit from cholesterol-lowering statin drugs. However, it is believed that many of these high-risk patients do not receive these potentially life-saving drugs. Researchers at ValueMedics Research in Virginia examined how frequently high-risk patients were prescribed statins during the first year of treatment for high blood pressure in a U.S. managed care setting.
PharMetrics' Patient-Centric Database, a proprietary, anonymous database which contains medical and pharmaceutical claims from members in more than 75 health plans across the United States, was used to identify patients aged 25 years or older who began treatment for high blood pressure between September 2001 and February 2004. Within this group of newly treated hypertensive patients, statin use was evaluated in patients with high cholesterol, established heart disease and diabetes, as well as in patients with no heart disease but three or more risk factors for heart disease, such as being greater than 55 years old or a history of stroke.
A total of 142,389 patients meeting these criteria were included in the study. About 30 percent (43,825 pts) had been diagnosed with high choles