Dispelling the myth: The use of renin-angiotensin blockade in atheromatous renovascular disease

Constantina Chrysochou, Rob Foley, James F. Young, Kaivan Khavandi, Ching M. Cheung, Philip A. Kalra

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83 Scopus citations


Background. Many physicians retain reservations regarding the routine prescription of renin-angiotensin blockade (RAB) in patients with atheromatous renovascular disease (ARVD). Conversely, these patients are in most need of the cardio-and renal protection offered by RAB. This reservation is mostly because of fear of precipitating acute renal deterioration. We aimed to study whether RAB can be used safely in ARVD patients and whether it altered their outcome. Methods. Prospective observational study of all ARVD patients presenting to our tertiary referral centre from 1999-2009. Data capture included usage and tolerability of RAB, and correlation with endpoints of cardiovascular events, dialysis or death. Results. Six hundred and twenty-one subjects were available for analysis. Mean age (SD) of the cohort was 71.3 (8.8) years, median (interquartile range) follow-up 3.1 (2.1, 4.8), range 0.2-10.61 years. Seventy-four patients had an intolerance to RAB at study entry. When utilized prospectively, RAB was tolerated in 357 of 378 patients (92%), and this was even seen in 54/69 (78.3%) patients with bilateral >60% renal artery stenosis (RAS) or occlusion. Patients (4/21) who were intolerant of RAB during follow-up (and 12 retrospectively intolerant), underwent renal revascularization which facilitated safe use of these medications post-procedure. On multivariate time-adjusted analysis, patients receiving RAB were significantly less likely to die (P = 0.02). Conclusion. RAB is well tolerated even in patients with bilateral severe RAS and reduced mortality in a large group of ARVD patients. We recommend all ARVD patients be considered for RAB therapy unless an absolute contra-indication exists. Intolerance of these agents due to renal dysfunction should be considered an emerging indication for renal revascularization to facilitate their re-introduction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1403-1409
Number of pages7
JournalNephrology Dialysis Transplantation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2012


  • angiotensin receptor blockers
  • angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
  • atheromatous renovascular disease
  • cardiovascular events
  • dialysis


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