Protection against stroke and dementia: an update on the latest clinical trial evidence

Curr Hypertens Rep. 2004 Aug;6(4):307-13. doi: 10.1007/s11906-004-0026-4.


Recent meta-analyses have examined the relationship between lowering blood pressure (BP) and reducing the risk for stroke and dementia. Studies have shown that drug therapy that successfully reduces systolic BP by only 10 mm Hg results in significant protection against stroke. Controversy exists regarding the most effective regimen, with supporters for the standards of diuretics and beta-blockers, or angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and calcium-channel blockers, pitted against the increasing evidence of the effectiveness of angiotensin-receptor blockers or statins. Additionally, the most effective strategy for delivery of BP-reducing therapy is being examined, with some studies supporting use of standards for primary prevention of stroke and reserving the newer drugs for secondary prevention. Ultimately, however, all agree that for patients with the highest risk for cardiovascular and cerebrovascular complications, the strategy of intervention is immaterial, and drug therapy, including low-dose aspirin, is vital.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Benzimidazoles / pharmacology
  • Benzimidazoles / therapeutic use
  • Biphenyl Compounds
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / therapeutic use
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Cognition / physiology
  • Dementia / prevention & control*
  • Hydrochlorothiazide / therapeutic use
  • Ramipril / pharmacology
  • Ramipril / therapeutic use
  • Stroke / physiopathology
  • Stroke / prevention & control*
  • Tetrazoles / pharmacology
  • Tetrazoles / therapeutic use
  • Verapamil / therapeutic use


  • Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Benzimidazoles
  • Biphenyl Compounds
  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Tetrazoles
  • Hydrochlorothiazide
  • Verapamil
  • Ramipril
  • candesartan