Association between Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors and Angiotensin Receptor Blockers and Lung Cancer

Scott A. Helgeson, Mark R. Waddle, Rebecca C. Burnside, Yalew T. Debella, Augustine S Lee, Charles D. Burger, Zhuo Li, Patrick W. Johnson, Neal M. Patel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) are the most commonly prescribed antihypertensives, with prior studies identifying a possible association between long-term use and increased rates of lung cancer. This study evaluated this potential association in a large population using propensity matching. Methods This was a population-based cohort study in a large healthcare system in three regions of the United States. Pairwise propensity score matching was performed using demographics and comorbidities. All of the adult patients in the healthcare system from January 1, 2000 to April 30, 2018 with at least 1 year of follow-up were included. Results In total, 3,253,811 patients with a median age of 59 (range 18-103) years were included. The ACEI group had a higher freedom from lung cancer versus controls at 15 years (98.47%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 98.41-98.54) versus 98.26%, (95% CI 98.20-98.33), whereas ARBs had similar rates versus controls at all time points. For patients diagnosed as having lung cancer, median all-cause survival was significantly higher in the ACEI (34.7 months, 95% CI 32.8-36.6) and ARB (30.9 months, 95% CI 28.1-33.8) groups than the control group (20.6 months, 95% CI 20.1-21.1). Conclusions This study showed lower rates of lung cancer with ACEI use and no difference in risk with ARBs. In addition, use of these medications was found to be associated with increased survival in those diagnosed as having lung cancer. This study supports the continued use of these medications without concern for increasing the risk of lung cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)607-613
Number of pages7
JournalSouthern medical journal
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2021


  • angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
  • angiotensin-receptor blocker
  • lung cancer
  • population study
  • propensity score

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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