Evidence supporting a link between vascular disorders such as hypertension and Alzheimer's disease (AD) is increasing. Population studies have suggested an association between hypertension and an increased risk of developing AD. A potential role for antihypertensive medications in the management of cognitive disorders has also been suggested, although findings are mixed. However, it is of interest that evidence is now leaning towards the possibility that some of these antihypertensive medications may improve cognition independent of their blood pressure lowering effects. Many of these drugs cross the blood–brain barrier and may influence neurotransmitters involved in cognition. Increasing knowledge of the actions of antihypertensives in the brain and the vascular system could lead to better treatment and/or prevention options for AD.
Expert Rev Neurother. 2013;13(5):477-482. © 2013 Expert Reviews Ltd.