Reconsidering the Polypill for Management of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Underserved Patients


Purpose of Review

The recent publication of “Polypill for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention in an Underserved Population” study prompts a thoughtful review of known care disparities in cardiovascular disease management in underserved patients. A polypill approach as a population health solution to this complex problem should also be reviewed.

Recent Findings

Muñoz and colleagues open-label, randomized controlled trial of polypill vs. usual care was undertaken in minority patients at a federally qualified health center. The polypill, containing atorvastatin, amlodipine, losartan, and hydrochlorothiazide resulted in statistically significant improvements in systolic blood pressure and low-density lipoprotein levels (p = 0.003 and p < 0.001, respectively).


The significant results of this study demonstrate the ability of a polypill approach to safely lower blood pressure, lipids, and thus estimated 10-year risk of CVD and are consistent with findings observed in previous literature. Uniquely, findings in a largely non-Hispanic Black patient population, offer an opportunity to examine this approach to combat important disparities in care in an underserved U.S. community. Further outcomes-based studies are warranted to explore the validity of these results and long-term safety of polypill treatment and are likely necessary prior to FDA approval and availability of a polypill product.

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Correspondence to Tracy E. Macaulay.

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Macaulay, T.E., Sheridan, E. & Ward, S. Reconsidering the Polypill for Management of Cardiovascular Risk Factors in Underserved Patients. Curr Cardiol Rep 23, 19 (2021).

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  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Risk modification
  • Population health
  • Polypill
  • Hypertension
  • Underserved
  • Social determinants of health