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Angiotensin‐Converting Enzyme Inhibitor Use and Incident Frailty in Women Aged 65 and Older: Prospective Findings from the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study

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To examine the associations between current use, duration, and potency of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and incident frailty in women aged 65 and older who were not frail at baseline.


Data were from the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study (WHI-OS), a prospective study conducted at 40 U.S. clinical centers.


Women aged 65 to 79 at baseline who were not frail (N=27,378).


Current ACE inhibitor use was ascertained through direct inspection of medicine containers at baseline. Components of frailty were self-reported low physical function or impaired walking, exhaustion, low physical activity, and unintended weight. Frailty was ascertained through self-reported and physical measurements data at baseline and 3-year clinic contacts.


By the 3-year follow-up, 3,950 (14.4%) women had developed frailty. Current ACE inhibitor use had no association with incident frailty (multivariate adjusted odds ratio=0.96, 95% confidence interval=0.82-1.13). Duration and potency of ACE inhibitor use were also not significantly associated with incident frailty. A similar pattern of results was observed when incident cardiovascular disease events were studied as a separate outcome or when the sample was restricted to subjects with hypertension.


Overall, incidence of frailty was similar in current ACE inhibitor users and nonusers.

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