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Chronic Use of Angiotensin Converting Enzyme Inhibitors and/or Angiotensin Receptor Blockers is Not Associated With Stroke After Noncardiac Surgery: A Retrospective Cohort Analysis

October 27, 2022

Background:
Inhibition of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone pathways reduces blood pressure and proliferation of vascular smooth muscles and may therefore reduce the risk of stroke. We tested the hypothesis that patients taking angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) for at least 6 months have fewer postoperative strokes after non-neurological, noncarotid, and noncardiac surgeries than those who do not.
Methods:
We considered adults who had noncardiac surgery at the Cleveland Clinic between January 2005 and December 2017. After excluding neurological and carotid surgeries, we assessed the confounder-adjusted association between chronic use of ACEIs/ARBs (during 6 preoperative months) and the incidence of postoperative stroke using logistic regression models.
Results:
Postoperative strokes occurred in 0.26% (27/10,449) of patients who were chronic ACEI/ARBs users and in 0.18% (112/ 62,771) of those who were not. There was no significant associ- ation between ACEI/ARB use and postoperative stroke, with an adjusted odds ratio of 1.15 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.91-1.44; P = 0.24). Secondarily, there was no association between exposures to ACEIs and postoperative stroke, versus no such exposure (adjusted odds ratio 0.88, 95% CI: 0.65-1.19; P = 0.33). Similarly, there was no association between exposure to ARBs and postoperative stroke, versus no such exposure (adjusted odds ratio 1.05, 95% CI: 0.75-1.48; P = 0.75).
Conclusion:
We did not detect an effect of chronic ACEI/ARB use on postoperative strokes in patients who had non-neurological, noncarotid and noncardiac surgery; however, power was extremely limited.
Key Words:
anesthesia, angiotensin receptor antagonists, angio- tensin receptor blocker, postoperative cognitive complications, ischemic stroke, postoperative complications