Rationale and design for the Controlled ONset Verapamil INvestigation of Cardiovascular Endpoints (CONVINCE) Trial

Control Clin Trials. 1998 Aug;19(4):370-90. doi: 10.1016/s0197-2456(98)00013-0.


The Controlled ONset Verapamil INvestigation of Cardiovascular Endpoints (CONVINCE) Trial is a randomized, prospective, double-blind, parallel-group, two-arm, actively controlled, multicenter, international 5-year clinical trial involving 15,000 patients. CONVINCE will compare the incidence of fatal or nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI), fatal or nonfatal stroke, or cardiovascular-disease-related death in two antihypertensive treatment regimens. One treatment arm begins with controlled onset-extended release (COER)-verapamil, which has its major antihypertensive effect 6-12 hours after administration. The other arm (standard of care (SOC)) begins with either hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ) or atenolol, one of which is preselected by the investigator for an individual patient prior to randomization. Secondary objectives include comparisons of the regimens for each of the components of the primary endpoint (separately), death or hospitalization related to cardiovascular disease, efficacy in lowering blood pressure to goal, primary events occurring between 6 am and noon, all-cause mortality, withdrawals from blinded therapy, cancer, and hospitalizations due to bleeding. Patients may be enrolled if they are hypertensive and at least 55 years of age and have an established second risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Initial medications include COER-verapamil (180 mg/d), HCTZ (12.5 mg/d), or atenolol (50 mg/d). Initial doses are doubled if blood pressure (BP) does not reach goal (systolic BP < 140 mm and diastolic BP < 90 mm Hg). If BP is not controlled by the higher dose of the initial medication, HCTZ is added to COER-verapamil, or the SOC choice not initially selected is added in the SOC arm. An ACE-inhibitor is recommended (although nearly any open-label medication is allowed) as the third step for patients whose BP is not adequately controlled or who have a contraindication to one of the two SOC medications. Patients take two sets of tablets daily, one in the morning and one in the evening. Although most patients switch from an established antihypertensive medication to randomized treatment, untreated patients with stages I-III hypertension (SBP between 140 and 190 or DBP between 90 and 110 mm Hg) are eligible. Outcomes are monitored by an independent Data and Safety Monitoring Board. Enrollment began during the third quarter of 1996, and follow-up is to be completed in the third quarter of 2002.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Atenolol / therapeutic use
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / prevention & control
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Humans
  • Hydrochlorothiazide / therapeutic use
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Myocardial Infarction / prevention & control
  • Verapamil / therapeutic use*


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Hydrochlorothiazide
  • Atenolol
  • Verapamil