New Trial Finds Single-Dose 'Polypill' Could Be A Game Changer For Cardiovascular Disease

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 805,000 people have a heart attack every year in the United States. About 200,000 of those are people who have already had one or more heart attacks. A new three-in-one drug combo has been found to significantly reduce the chance of heart attacks in those who have already experienced at least one (via Gizmodo). During a clinical trial, the medication, known as polypill, helped people have fewer heart attacks, strokes, or cardiovascular-related deaths than other common types of care.

It has been a common practice to prescribe patients multiple medications to treat cardiovascular disease, but managing them can be difficult. Combining them into the single-dose polypill shows promise for making cardiovascular treatment much easier and more effective for patients. "The SECURE study findings suggest that the polypill could become an integral element of strategies to prevent recurrent cardiovascular events in patients who have had a heart attack," said senior study author Valentin Fuster, the physician-in-chief at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, in a statement released by Mount Sinai. "By simplifying treatment and improving adherence, this approach has the potential to reduce the risk of recurrent cardiovascular disease and death on a global scale."

What is cardiovascular disease?

Cardiovascular disease is a general term for conditions affecting the heart or blood vessels (via Cleveland Clinic). It is usually used to refer to coronary heart disease, where fatty deposits build up in the arteries and cause them to narrow. This can lead to angina, heart attacks, and other problems. Cardiovascular disease can also refer to other conditions that affect the structure or function of the heart, such as cardiomyopathy, congenital heart disease, valvular heart disease, and so on.

Cardiovascular disease is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. In fact, it is responsible for more than 17 million deaths each year (via The World Health Organization). The good news is that cardiovascular disease is largely preventable. Making some lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and not smoking, can dramatically reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. If you already have cardiovascular disease, there are treatments available that can help to manage the condition and reduce your risk of having further problems. These include lifestyle changes, medication, and surgery.