A single dose of the drug, called zilebesiran, can control the condition for up to six months, with few side effects, and could end daily tablets
A twice yearly injection that “switches off” high blood pressure could soon consign daily pills to history. A single dose of the drug, called zilebesiran, can control the condition for up to six months, with few side effects.
The blood pressure of most patients dropped after one jab. This represented a 20% or more reduction in the chances of suffering a heart attack, stroke or other cardiac event.
Some people could quit all blood pressure medication. Medics say the injections could be self-administered, much like diabetes drugs. The news, unveiled at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions, in Philadelphia, was welcomed by cardiologists.
Although the study involved just a few hundred patients, the data was hailed as an important shift in the treatment of hypertension. High blood pressure is responsible for half of all heart attacks and strokes.
Prof George Bakris, who was involved in the trials, said the idea of ditching daily tablets for two injections a year had patients “standing in line” for the drug. “If this lives up to its promise, it will represent a huge shift in treatment,” he said, calling for larger trials.
High blood pressure affects 14.4 million people in the UK – a quarter of British adults.