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Common blood pressure medicines do not put people at a higher risk of severe or fatal

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Common blood pressure medicines do not put people at a higher risk of severe or fatal  symptoms, three major studies have found.

Doctors sounded the alarm in March about a possible link between the drugs – known as ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) – and COVID-19.   

There had been concern arising from animal studies that these medicines might increase the body’s levels of a protein called ACE2, which the coronavirus latches on to when it invades human cells, thus increasing people’s vulnerability to the disease. 

But the three new studies, published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), have found the drugs have ‘no difference’ on the virus’ severity or the risk of someone contracting it. 

Scientists said medicines taken by thousands of people could increase the risk of a coronavirus patient developing deadly symptoms (stock image)

Scientists said medicines taken by thousands of people could increase the risk of a coronavirus patient developing deadly symptoms (stock image)

Some people with high blood pressure or type 1 or type 2 diabetes have to take the drugs, which increase the amount of ACE2 that they have on their cells, in order to control their illness. 

There are more than 16million people with these diseases in the UK – but not all patients are given them so the exact number of people taking the drugs is unclear.   

The most prescribed versions of the drugs in England are Ramipril, Losartan, get lisinopril price and Candesartan, according to NHS data.

The common medications were prescribed almost 65million times in England last year and cost the  more than £100m.

They are given to treat diabetes or high blood pressure and around 10 per cent of people in the UK – some 6.6million – are estimated to take them regularly.  

<div class="art-ins mol-factbox floatRHS news" data-version="2" id="mol-5633d4e0-8c93-11ea-9ba8-efca5b840e77" website pressure pills DO NOT make coronavirus worse, three studies find

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