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Original Investigation
August 26, 2020

Efficacy of Telmisartan to Slow Growth of Small Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms: A Randomized Clinical Trial

Author Affiliations
  • 1Queensland Research Centre for Peripheral Vascular Disease, College of Medicine and Dentistry, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland, Australia
  • 2Department of Surgery, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, the Netherlands
  • 3The Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Townsville University Hospital, Townsville, Queensland, Australia
  • 4The Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine, Townsville, Queensland, Australia
  • 5Department of Vascular Surgery, The Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
  • 6Department of Surgery, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
  • 7Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, California
  • 8Discipline of Surgery, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
JAMA Cardiol. Published online August 26, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamacardio.2020.3524
Key Points

Question  Does telmisartan reduce the growth of small abdominal aortic aneurysms?

Findings  In this placebo-controlled randomized trial of 210 participants, a significant effect of telmisartan on abdominal aortic aneurysm growth rates was not shown. Telmisartan had no effect on requirement for abdominal aortic aneurysm repair or aneurysm rupture.

Meaning  Further adequately powered trials are needed to assess the efficacy of medical therapies to slow abdominal aortic aneurysm growth.


Importance  Currently there is no drug therapy for abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA).

Objective  To test the efficacy of the angiotensin receptor blocker telmisartan in slowing AAA growth in the Telmisartan in the Management of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (TEDY) trial.

Design, Setting, and Participants  A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial recruited participants between September 6, 2011, and October 5, 2016, to evaluate the efficacy of telmisartan treatment in patients with AAA. Participants with 35- to 49-mm AAAs recruited from Australia, the Netherlands, and the US were randomized 1:1 to receive telmisartan, 40 mg, or identical placebo. Analyses were conducted according to intention-to-treat principles. Final follow-up was conducted on October 11, 2018, and data analysis was performed between June and November 2019.

Intervention  Telmisartan, 40 mg, or identical placebo.

Main Outcomes and Measures  The primary outcome of the difference in AAA growth, assessed on core imaging laboratory-read ultrasonographic scanning, was tested with linear mixed-effects models. Other outcomes included effects on blood pressure, computed tomographic (CT)–measured AAA diameter and volume, time to AAA-related events (AAA repair or mortality due to AAA rupture), and health-related quality of life.

Results  Of 300 intended participants, 210 were enrolled and randomized to receive telmisartan (n = 107) or placebo (n = 103). Of patients included in the intention-to-treat analysis (telmisartan: n = 106, placebo: n = 101), 183 were men (88%); mean (SD) age was 73.5 (7.9) years. At 1 year, participants receiving telmisartan had mean lower systolic (8.9; 95% CI, 4.1-13.8 mm Hg; P < .001) and diastolic (7.0; 4.3-9.8 mm Hg; P < .001) blood pressure levels compared with participants receiving placebo. A total of 188 participants (91%) received at least 2 ultrasonographic scans and 133 participants (64%) had at least 2 CT scans. There was no significant difference in ultrasonographic-assessed AAA growth rates among those assigned telmisartan (1.68 mm/y) or placebo (1.78 mm/y): mean difference, −0.11 mm/y (95% CI, −0.60 to 0.38 mm/y; P = .66). Telmisartan had no significant effects on AAA growth assessed by CT-measured AAA diameter (mean difference, −0.01 mm/y; 95% CI, −0.02 to 0.01 mm/y; P = .23) or volume (mean difference, −0.02 cm3/y; 95% CI, −0.04 to 0.00 cm3/y; P = .11), AAA-related events (relative risk, 1.35; 95% CI, 0.54-3.35; P = .52), or health-related quality of life (mean difference in physical component score at 24 months, 0.4; 95% CI, 0.4-0.4; P = .80). Hypotensive symptoms (eg, syncope) were twice as common among participants receiving telmisartan compared with placebo (28 [26%] vs 13 [13%]; P = .02), but overall adverse event rates were otherwise similar for both groups.

Conclusions and Relevance  This underpowered study did not show a treatment effect for telmisartan on small AAA growth. Future trials will need to ensure adequate sample size and duration of follow-up.

Trial Registrations  anzctr.org.au Identifier: ACTRN12611000931976; ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT01683084