This study was a prospective, randomized, open, blinded endpoint study to assess the effects of angiotensin II type 1 receptor blocker, losartan, compared with calcium channel blocker, amlodipine, on left ventricular (LV) diastolic function and atherosclerosis of the carotid artery in Japanese patients with mild-to-moderate hypertension, LV hypertrophy, diastolic dysfunction and preserved systolic function. Fifty-seven patients were randomly assigned to losartan- or amlodipine-based treatment groups and were followed up for 18 months. Blood pressure was similarly reduced by both regimens. Losartan shortened the transmitral E-wave deceleration time, and amlodipine reduced LV mass index; however, there was no significant difference in the percent changes of these indices between the two groups. Mean carotid intima-media thickness (mean IMT) as well as plaque score significantly increased in the amlodipine-based regimen (pre: 1.05±0.26 mm, follow-up: 1.23±0.33 mm, P=0.0015), but not in the losartan-based regimen (pre: 1.08±0.35 mm, follow-up: 1.16±0.52 mm, P=non-significant). The percent increase in mean IMT in the amlodipine-based regimen tended to be large compared with the losartan-based regimen (amlodipine: 19.8±23.7%, losartan: 6.9±23.3%, P=0.06). Under similar reduction of blood pressure, losartan is likely effective in protecting the progression of atherosclerosis of the carotid artery compared with amlodipine. Losartan may improve LV diastolic function, and amlodipine may attenuate LV hypertrophy; however, this study cannot make consecutive remarks about the superiority of either treatment regimen in the effects on cardiac function and geometry. This study has been registered at http://www.umin.ac.jp/ctr/listj/ (identifier C000000319).
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