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To the Editor.—
I must respond to the claim of Dr. Freis (229:689, 1974) that patients in the United States with hypertension are being denied useful new drugs (debrisoquin, bethanidine) now available in the United Kingdom. These drugs have been available in Canada for more than a year (debrisoquin since March 1973 and bethanidine since September 1970). They are used only rarely for hypertension, and the consensus of opinion here is that neither drug offers a significant advantage over guanethidine. I might also add that clonidine, although used more widely than either of the two drugs mentioned by Dr. Freis, has not revolutionized the treatment of hypertension, either.Rest safely, United States hypertensives! The armamentarium of drugs available and used for hypertension in the United States represents the best available used successfully in hypertension. No other suggestion is substantiated on an objective basis.
Canada AT. Availability of Antihypertensive Drugs. JAMA. 1974;230(4):538. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03240040016011
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