At the present time members of the class of drugs called beta-blockers are commonly used as first-line treatment for elevated blood pressure. We asked whether this class of drugs was as good as other classes in preventing death, stroke and heart attacks associated with elevated blood pressure. The available scientific literature was searched to find all the randomised controlled trial (RCT) evidence to assess this question. Thirteen RCTs were found and these trials suggested that first-line beta-blockers for elevated blood pressure were not as good at decreasing mortality and morbidity as other classes of drugs: thiazides, calcium channel blockers, and renin angiotensin system inhibitors.
Bradley, H.A.; Mayosi, B.M.; Maroney, R.T.; Mbewu, A.; Opie, L.; Volmink, J.; Wiysonge, C.S.U. Beta-blockers for hypertension. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (2007) (Issue 1) Art. No.: CD002003. [DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD002003.pub2]