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A. Higher Doses of a Heart Failure Drug Deemed Safe and Effective

Narrator: This is Science Today. A new study has found a majority of doctors are not prescribing ACE inhibitors, a popular heart failure drug, in high enough doses for effective treatment. Dr. Andrew Michaels of the University of California, San Francisco, says certain high-risk patients, such as those who have had angioplasty or a bypass, are often not even given ACE inhibitors.

Michaels: Part of that potentially could be that some physicians may feel that after a patient is revascularized with either a bypass or an angioplasty, their benefit from ACE inhibitors might be a little less, although no clinical trial would support that idea.

Narrator: And no clinical trial could support the idea that higher doses of ACE inhibitors are unsafe. So Michaels says these drugs should be used more aggressively, especially in those patients with congestive heart failure.

Michaels: Those patients are at really high risk of having another heart attack or dying within the next year. And if those patients are discharged on the ACE inhibitor, those rates of complications go down dramatically.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.