5 May 2014

New pill hailed as breakthrough

10:01 am on 5 May 2014

One pill is being called a potential breakthrough in the prevention of heart attacks and strokes.

pills & glass of water

Photo: PHOTO NZ (file)

Currently people at risk of cardiovascular disease take a combination of blood pressure and cholesterol-lowering medications, as well as aspirin.

But the polypill includes all of those in a single dose.

A trial conducted in Australia Britain, India and New Zealand found the polypill benefits high-risk patients.

Auckland University associate professor of public health Chris Bullen said the trials were very promising.

He told Morning Report they showed patients taking the polypill were more likely to take the recommended medication, resulting in a reduction of risk factors of heart attacks and stroke.

Mr Bullen said it will be at least a few years before the polypill is accessible in New Zealand.