Finnerty, Frank A.; Maxwell, Morton H.; Lunn, John; Moser, Marvin
February 1977
Angiology;Feb1977, Vol. 28 Issue 2, p125
Academic Journal
In a double-blind study the long-term effects of diuretics in uncomplicated mild and moderate essential hypertension were investigated. A total of 52 outpatients completed 24 months of treatment with either furosemide at a dose of 40 mg twice daily (26 patients) or hydrochlorothiazide at a dose of 50 mg twice daily (26 patients). Throughout the 2 years of the study, both furosemide and hydrochlorothiazide significantly lowered the mean supine blood pressure from baseline levels. The fall was less with furosemide than with hydrochlorothiazide, although the difference between the two drugs reached statistical significance at only three of the eight time points. Serum electrolytes were used as major indicators of safety. The cumulative incidence of hypokalemia of 8% for the furosemide group compared to that of 62% for the hydrochlorothiazide group. Although diuretics, alone or combined with other blood pressure-lowering drugs, have been used for many years to treat essential hypertension, information on their continued efficacy and safety is scarce. Short-term trials had shown that furosemide (Lasix®) resembled the thiazides in its antihypertensive properties, despite its different mode of action on the kidney. A cooperative study in hypertensive patients was therefore undertaken at three clinical centers to investigate the long-term effects of furosemide on blood pressure and on serum electrolytes, and to compare them with those of hydrochlorothiazide.


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