Reducing Heartdisease by 80 percent with one pill daily?
In what Richard Smith, the editor of the British Medical Journal (BMJ) calls "the most important issue in 50 years", two professors of the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine at Barts suggest that the western population could reduce the incidence of vascular events (i.e. Strokes, Heartattacks] by 80%, if we would all start taking a preventive pill made up of 6 different ingredients:
All of these drugs are widely used in cardiology and general practice and are known to be safe, well tolerated and low on side effects. Interestingly enough, most of the criticism by the scientific community has been focused on Folic Acid, which is supposed to lower the patient's Serum Homocysteine levels. Apart from that, you could discuss the inclusion of a beta-blocker, which in some men is associated with erectile dysfunction, but as the patents of all these drugs have run out, the pill could be chealply manufactured and could be available pretty soon.
From a primary care perspective this would be great, as you could get your patients to take all their drugs in one go and they wouldn't complain over and over again that they'd be "rattling after breakfast".
A strategy to reduce cardiovascular disease by more than 80% , N J Wald, M R Law,BMJ 2003;326:1419 (28 June)
The most important BMJ for 50 years? Richard Smith, BMJ 2003;326 (28 June)