Washington: Taking blood pressure pills at bedtime not only controls blood pressure more efficiently but also lowers the risk of heart problems, a new study has suggested.
The results indicate that heart conditions such as strokes and heart attacks can be drastically reduced in patients with hypertension with no extra effort or cost.
Ramon Hermida, PhD (University of Vigo, in Spain) and his colleagues studied the impact of taking blood pressure medications at different times of the day, on health, in a group of 661 patients who had chronic kidney disease and hypertension.
Half of the patients took all prescribed blood pressure-lowering medications first thing in the morning and half took at least one of them at bedtime.
After an average follow-up of 5.4 years, patients who took at least one blood pressure-lowering medication at bedtime had better control of their blood pressure and were about one-third as likely to experience a heart-related event such as a heart attack, a stroke, or heart failure compared to patients who took their medications upon awakening.
Also, sleep-time blood pressure was a much more accurate measure of heart health than wake-time blood pressure.
“Our results indicate that cardiovascular event rates in patients with hypertension can be reduced by more than 50 percent with a zero-cost strategy of administering blood pressure-lowering medications at bedtime rather than in the morning,” said Dr. Hermida.
“This study also documents for the first time that sleep-time blood pressure is the most relevant independent marker of cardiovascular risk,” he added.
The study will be published in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society Nephrology (JASN).