Benefits of drug therapy seen in patients at moderate CV risk

STARTING drug treatment may be appropriate when cardiovascular disease risk is moderate but patients don’t respond to lifestyle interventions, according to draft new primary prevention guidelines.

The National Vascular Disease Prevention Alliance (NVDPA) released its draft Guidelines for the Management of Absolute Cardiovascular Disease Risk last week.

It recommends that if adults with a moderate absolute cardiovascular risk of 10–15% over five years don’t respond to lifestyle changes after 3–6 months, blood pressure-lowering and lipid-lowering medications may be initiated in those with a family history of premature cardiovascular disease.

Other moderate risk patients qualifying for pharmacotherapy are those with persistently elevated systolic blood pressure 160 mmHg or above, and Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander people.

Professor Mark Nelson, a member of the expert guidelines writing committee, said it was