This study set out to assess whether the effectiveness and tolerability of lercanidipine for the treatment of essential hypertension in daily clinical practice is affected by body mass index (BMI) or body fat percent (BFP). A total of 2,793 out-patients (mean age 59.8 years) with mild-to-moderate hypertension participated in a multi-centre, prospective, open-label study. All patients received oral treatment over 12 weeks with lercanidipine 10 mg, which was titrated to 20 mg if blood pressure (BP) control was not attained. They were visited at baseline and at four, eight and 12 weeks. BFP was measured by the bioelectrical impedance analysis using an Omron BF-302 body fat monitor. Patients who were overweight or obese were also prescribed a hypocaloric diet.
Results showed that, at baseline, sytolic BP was 159.4+/-11.7 mmHg, diastolic BP was 94.5+/-7.5 mmHg, BMI was 30.9+/-8.4 kg/m2, and BFP 27.7+/-6.3%. At 12 weeks, BP was lowered to 138+/-10.1 mmHg (systolic) and 81+/-7.2 mmHg (diastolic) (p<0001). BMI and BFP significantly decreased to 29.3+8 kg/m2 and 27.3+4.1% (p<0.05), respectively, which was most likely to be diet-related. Antihypertensive effectiveness was independent of baseline BMI and BFP values. There was a low incidence of adverse effects (5.5%), with headache (3.4%) and pedal oedema (1.5%) being the most frequent. Some 93% of patients completed the 12-week treatment period.
The study showed that lercanidipine is an effective and well tolerated antihypertensive drug in daily clinical practice and its antihypertensive properties are not influenced by BMI and BFP.