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Heart attack survivors who took a three-in-one "polypill" had fewer additional heart attacks and related problems than those who received standard care, a new study finds.
The study included nearly 2,500 older adults who'd had a heart attack in the past six months. They were randomly assigned to usual care (which included guideline-recommended drugs) or to take a single polypill. The polypills contained a blood pressure drug (ramipril, known separately as Altace), a cholesterol-lowering drug (atorvastatin, known separately as Lipitor), and low-dose aspirin, which helps prevent blood clots. Researchers followed participants for a median of three years.
During that time, 118 people in the polypill group had a heart attack or stroke, received an emergency artery-opening procedure, or died of heart-related causes compared with 156 people in the usual care group. Taking a polypill makes it easier to stick to a medication regimen, which likely explains why that group had lower rates of serious cardiovascular problems, say the authors. Their findings were published Sept. 15, 2022, in The New England Journal of Medicine.
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