Common Blood Pressure Meds May Raise Lung Cancer Risk


Results of a study published in BMJ suggest that blood pressure-lowering medications in the angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor class (ACE inhibitors) may increase lung cancer risk compared to angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), another commonly prescribed class of blood pressure medications. While the increased risk is modest for individual patients, according to the researchers who conducted the study, it’s significant because ACE inhibitors are so widely used.

The researchers, from McGill University in Montreal, Canada, analyzed medical records for nearly one million adults in the United Kingdom who began taking blood pressure medicine between 1995 and 2015 and had no prior cancer history. During the average six-year plus follow-up period, they identified 7,952 cases of lung cancer. After adjusting for lung cancer risk factors like age, gender, BMI, smoking status, alcohol use disorders, and history of lung disease, the researchers determined that, after five years, ACE inhibitors were associated with a 14 percent higher lung cancer risk than ARBs. In study participants who had used an ACE inhibitor for more than 10 years, the risk was 31 percent higher.

ACE inhibitors that are prescribed in the United States include:

  • Benazepril (Lotensin)
  • Captopril (Capoten)
  • Enalapril (Vasotec)
  • Fosinopril (Monopril)
  • Lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril)
  • Moexipril (Univasc)
  • Perindopril (Aceon)
  • Quinapril (Accupril)
  • Ramipril (Altace)
  • Trandolapril (Mavik)

Sourced from: BMJ