The following article is a part of conference coverage from AHA Scientific Sessions 2020, held virtually from November 13 to 17, 2020. The team at the Clinical Advisor will be reporting on the latest news and research conducted by leading experts in cardiology. Check back for more from the AHA 2020.


Treatment with angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEI) and/or angiotensin-receptor blockers (ARBs) was not found to increase the rates of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection or associated mortality, according to study results presented at the American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions 2020, held virtually from November 13 to 17, 2020.

These were 2 meta-analyses of studies in which in-hospital mortality of patients with COVID-19 (n=14) and COVID-19 positivity rates (n=3) were examined among patients who were treated vs not treated with ACEI or/and ARB.

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COVID-19 testing positivity rates were found to be comparable in patients treated vs not treated with ACEI (odds ratio [OR], 0.96; 95% CI, 0.88-1.04; P =.69), and in those taking vs not taking ARBs (OR, 0.99; 95% CI, 0.91-1.08; P =.35).

In the second analysis, in-hospital mortality rates of patients with COVID-19 were similar for patients treated vs not treated with ACEI and/or ARB (hazard ratio [HR], 0.88; 95% CI, 0.64-1.20; P =.42). In a sub-analysis that included only patients with hypertension, the use of ACEI and/or ARB was associated with a significant reduction in in-hospital mortality (HR, 0.65; 95% CI, 0.48-0.87).

 “Our study results confirm that patients already taking ACE inhibitors and ARBs should not discontinue taking them due to COVID-19 infection,” noted lead study author Yujiro Yokoyama, MD, of Saint Luke’s University Health Network’s Easton Hospital in Pennsylvania.

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Yokoyama Y, Takagi H, Aikawa T, Kuno T. Meta-analyses for the effect of renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors on mortality and testing positive of COVID-19. Presented at: AHA Scientific Sessions 2020; November 13-17, 2020. Presentation 399.

This article originally appeared on The Cardiology Advisor