Current best evidence for clinical care (more info)
INTRODUCTION: The use of renin-angiotensin system (RAS) inhibitors, including angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs), was alleged to cause a more severe course of novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
METHODS: We systematically reviewed the published studies to assess the association of RAS inhibitors with mortality as well as disease severity in COVID-19 patients. A systematic literature search was performed to retrieve relevant original studies investigating mortality and severity (severe/critical disease) in COVID-19 patients with and without exposure to RAS inhibitors.
RESULTS: A total of 59 original studies were included for qualitative synthesis. Twenty-four studies that reported adjusted effect sizes (24 studies reported mortality outcomes and 16 studies reported disease severity outcomes), conducted in RAS inhibitor-exposed and unexposed groups, were pooled in random-effects models to estimate overall risk. Quality assessment of studies revealed that most of the studies included were of fair quality. The use of an ACEI/ARB in COVID-19 patients was significantly associated with lower odds (odds ratio [OR] = 0.73, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.56-0.95; n = 18,749) or hazard (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.75, 95% CI 0.60-0.95; n = 26,598) of mortality compared with non-use of ACEI/ARB. However, the use of an ACEI/ARB was non-significantly associated with lower odds (OR = 0.91, 95% CI 0.75-1.10; n = 7446) or hazard (HR = 0.73, 95% CI 0.33-1.66; n = 6325) of developing severe/critical disease compared with non-use of an ACEI/ARB.
DISCUSSION: Since there was no increased risk of harm, the use of RAS inhibitors for hypertension and other established clinical indications can be maintained in COVID-19 patients.
|Discipline / Specialty Area||Score|
|Family Medicine (FM)/General Practice (GP)||
|General Internal Medicine-Primary Care(US)||
This meta-analysis is consistent with a wide body of research and is now conventional wisdom.
There are several publications, small and large, with similar conclusion, thus the contribution of this paper is modest. As a review, it serves an useful purpose.
Although useful, these studies must be confirmed.