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New Report Available Evaluating Drug Treatment and Alternative Therapies for Stable Angina

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Press Release Date: February 1, 2000

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) announces the completion of a report evaluating the effectiveness of beta-blockers, calcium antagonists, nitrates, and alternative therapies used to treat patients who have stable angina. Among the many findings is that beta-blockers are associated with fewer episodes of angina when compared with calcium antagonists in general and with nifedipine in particular. The report, commissioned by AHRQ, was developed after a systematic review of the literature by a team of investigators at the University of California, San Francisco-Stanford (UCSF-Stanford) Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC), one of the 12 Agency-designated EPCs. The topic was nominated by the American College of Cardiology (ACC), the American Heart Association (AHA), and the American College of Physicians (ACP). During development of the report, the EPC worked with a committee organized by the nominators to develop guidelines based on the findings.

The summary of Evidence Report Number 10, An Evaluation of Beta-Blockers, Calcium Antagonists, Nitrates, and Alternative Therapies for Stable Angina (AHRQ 00-E002), is available online at Print copies are available from the AHRQ Publications Clearinghouse by writing to P.O. Box 8547, Silver Spring, MD 20907, or calling 800-358-9295 within the U.S. or (703) 437-2078 from outside the country. Copies of the full report are expected to be available in early 2000.

Editor's Note: A scientific article based on the research for this report was published in the May 26, 1999, issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Other citations include the ACC/AHA/ACP-ASIM Guidelines for the Management of Patients with Chronic Stable Angina: a report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines (Committee on Management of Patients With Chronic Stable Angina); Journal of the American College of Cardiology, June 1999.

For more information, contact AHRQ Public Affairs (301) 427-1364: Harriett V. Bennett, (301) 427-1861 (

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