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Medical Science Monitor Basic Research


eISSN: 1643-3750

Effects of Allopurinol on Arterial Stiffness: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

Gang Deng, Zhandong Qiu, Dayong Li, Yu Fang, Suming Zhang

Department of Neurology, Tongji Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2016; 22:1389-1397

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.898370

Available online:

Published: 2016-04-25


BACKGROUND: Several studies have tested the effects of allopurinol on arterial stiffness, but the results have been inconclusive. We aimed to conduct a meta-analysis to investigate the impacts of allopurinol treatment on arterial stiffness, as measured by pulse wave velocity (PWV) and augmentation index (AIx).
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) assessing the effects of allopurinol on arterial stiffness were identified through searching PubMed, Web of Science, EMBASE, the Cochrane Library for Central Register of Clinical Trials, and China National Knowledge Infrastructure up to December 2015. The primary endpoints were the change of PWV and AIx after allopurinol treatment. The weighted mean difference (WMD) or standardized mean difference (SMD) and the 95% confidence interval (CI) of each study were pooled for meta-analysis.
RESULTS: A total of 11 RCTs met the inclusion criteria and were included in the final meta-analysis. Eight RCTs with 1,111 patients were pooled for PWV; eight RCTs with 397 patients were pooled for PWV. Allopurinol administration did not significantly change PWV (WMD=–0.19 m/s, 95% CI: –0.49 to 0.12, Z=1.21, p=0.23), but significantly reduced AIx (SMD=–0.34, 95% CI: –0.54 to –0.14, Z=3.35, p=0.0008).
CONCLUSIONS: Although our meta-analysis showed some favorable effects of allopurinol treatment on improving AIx, its impact on arterial stiffness must be tested in more large-scale RCTs.

Keywords: Allopurinol - pharmacology, Publication Bias, Pulse Wave Analysis, Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic, Vascular Stiffness - drug effects