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TOPCAT Fails to Find Advantage for Spironolactone in HFPEF (9 Apr 2014)

Although a significant portion of people with heart failure have preserved ejection fraction, none of the proven heart failure therapies has been shown to be beneficial in this important and growing heart failure subpopulation. Now a new NHLBI-funded study has failed to find a benefit in this group for spironolactone, which is a cornerstone of…

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NSAID Use Associated with Atrial Fibrillation in Older People (8 Apr 2014)

Use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in the elderly is associated with an increased risk for atrial fibrillation (AF), according to a prospective study in BMJ Open. Using a Dutch cohort designed to investigate risk factors of disease onset in the aged, researchers followed some 8400 people for 13 years. None had AF at baseline…

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Study Suggests Link Between Viagra and Melanoma (8 Apr 2014)

In recent years, researchers have uncovered a potentially important pathway whereby PDE5A inhibitors (which include sildenafil — Viagra — and other drugs used to treat erectile dysfunction and pulmonary hypertension) could potentially increase the risk for developing melanoma. Now a study provides early evidence showing an association between sildenafil and melanoma, though, like all observational…

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Dabigatran Approved for Treatment of DVT and PE (7 Apr 2014)

Boehringer Ingelheim announced on Monday that the FDA has approved dabigatran (Pradaxa) for the treatment of venous thromboembolism (VTE), which includes both deep venous thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE), and to reduce the risk of recurrent DVT and PE in patients who have been previously treated. All three of the new oral anticoagulants — dabigatran, rivaroxaban…

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Cardiovascular Disease Declines in Rich Countries but Grows Elsewhere (3 Apr 2014)

A new Global Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) Atlas portrays a divided world where rich countries are gradually freeing themselves from the yoke of CVD but where many poor and middle-income countries are still struggling. Ischemic heart disease and stroke were the two biggest contributors to the global burden of disease in 2010, accounting for 5.2% and…

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Novartis Trial Was Stopped Early Because of a Significant Drop in Cardiovascular Mortality (31 Mar 2014)

The largest-ever trial in heart failure was stopped early because of a highly statistically significant reduction in cardiovascular mortality, according to one of the trial’s two primary investigators. Earlier today I reported that the PARADIGM-HF trial testing LCZ696, a novel, first-in-class Angiotensin Receptor Neprilysin Inhibitor (ARNI), had been stopped early because the trial had demonstrated a significant reduction in the…

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Early Success for Novel Novartis Heart Failure Drug (31 Mar 2014)

A large clinical trial testing a novel compound from Novartis for chronic heart failure has been stopped early for efficacy. In a press release Novartis said the Data Monitoring Committee had recommended early closure of the PARADIGM-HF trial because the trial had demonstrated a significant reduction in the combined primary endpoint of cardiovascular death and heart failure hospitalization. PARADIGM-HF randomized patients with heart…

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Aspirin and Clonidine Fail to Help Surgery Patients (31 Mar 2014)

Myocardial infarction (MI) is among the most common and serious side effects of noncardiac surgery. An effective regimen to minimize this risk has been the subject of considerable debate in recent years. The controversy was recently exacerbated because the recommendation to use beta-blockers in this setting was based on research which has now been discredited. Substantial…

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High-Sensitivity Troponin Test Could Identify Low-Risk Chest Pain Patients in the ED (30 Mar 2014)

Approximately 15-20 million people in Europe and the United States go to the emergency department every year with chest pain. Many can be discharged early if they are not having an acute coronary syndrome. A large, new, single-center observational study, presented at the American College of Cardiology meeting in Washington, DC and published simultaneously in the Journal…

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MADIT-CRT Long-Term Follow-Up Shows Survival Benefit with CRT-D (30 Mar 2014)

MADIT-CRT was an influential trial that showed a reduction in heart failure complications — but not mortality — when cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) was added to an implantable defibrillator in patients with mild heart failure who also had left bundle-branch block (LBBB). Patients in the trial were followed for 2.4 years, raising questions about the long-term effects…

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