Effects of candesartan in acute stroke on vascular events during long-term follow-up: results from the Scandinavian Candesartan Acute Stroke Trial (SCAST)

Astrid G Hornslien, Else C Sandset, Jannicke Igland, Andreas Terént, Gudrun Boysen, Philip M W Bath, Gordon D Murray, Eivind Berge

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Abstract

BACKGROUND: Randomized-controlled trials have shown no beneficial short-term effects of blood pressure lowering treatment in the acute phase of stroke.

AIM: We aimed to see whether blood pressure lowering treatment with candesartan in the acute phase can lead to benefits that become apparent over a longer period of follow-up.

METHODS: The Scandinavian Candesartan Acute Stoke Trial was a randomized- and placebo-controlled trial of candesartan in 2,029 patients with acute stroke and systolic blood pressure ≥140 mmHg. Trial treatment was given for seven-days, and the primary follow-up period was six-months. We have used the national patient registries and the cause of death registries in the Scandinavian countries to collect data on vascular events and deaths up to three-years from randomization. The primary end-point was the composite of stroke, myocardial infarction, or vascular death, and we used Cox proportional hazards regression model for analysis.

RESULTS: Long-term data were available for 1,256 of the 1,286 patients (98%) from Scandinavia. The risk of the primary composite end-point did not differ significantly between the groups (candesartan 178/632 events, placebo 203/624 events, hazard ratio = 0·87, 95% confidence interval 0·71-1·07). There were also no statistically significant differences for the secondary end-points stroke and all-cause death, or in any of the pre-specified subgroups.

CONCLUSIONS: Treatment with candesartan in the acute phase of stroke was not associated with clear long-term clinical benefits. This result supports the conclusion from trials with short-term follow-up, that blood pressure lowering treatment with candesartan should not be given routinely to patients with acute stroke and raised blood pressure.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Stroke
Volume10
Issue number6
Early online date22 Mar 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015

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