Research Roundup

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Debbie Rigby takes a look at the latest in research news

Cardiovascular and Renal Outcomes with Empagliflozin in Heart Failure

The EMPEROR-Reduced Trial compared empagliflozin (10 mg once daily) or placebo (in addition to recommended therapy) in 3730 patients with heart failure and an ejection fraction of 40% or less. Results show a lower risk of cardiovascular death or hospitalization for heart failure than those in the placebo group, regardless of the presence or absence of diabetes. In addition, the annual rate of decline in the estimated glomerular filtration rate was slower in the empagliflozin group than in the placebo group, and empagliflozin-treated patients had a lower risk of serious renal outcomes.

New Engl J Med, August 29, 2020.



Early Rhythm-Control Therapy in Patients with Atrial Fibrillation

In the EAST-AFNET 4 Trial early rhythm-control therapy was associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular outcomes than usual care among patients with early atrial fibrillation and cardiovascular conditions. Early rhythm control included treatment with antiarrhythmic drugs or atrial fibrillation ablation after randomization. Usual care limited rhythm control to the management of atrial fibrillation–related symptoms.

New Engl J Med, August 29, 2020.

The burden of exacerbations in mild asthma

A systematic review of 64 articles (n=49,743) on patients with mild asthma shows a wide variance on severe exacerbations and hospitalisation for asthma. In prospective studies, between 0–22% of patients were hospitalised for asthma or had a severe exacerbation in the previous year. In RCTs, severe exacerbation rates in placebo recipients taking only short-acting β2-agonist therapy ranged from 0.20–2.88 per year. These data provide new evidence of the burden of exacerbations in mild asthma.

ERJ Open Research 2020;6:00359-2019.

Predicting response to topical non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in osteoarthritis

An individual patient data meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials has concluded that topical NSAIDs are effective for OA pain relief. Trials show a statistically significant greater effect in women than men. The overall treatment effect was a 25 point reduction in pain scores (0-100 pain scale). The researchers concluded that topical NSAIDs may be considered in a patient with OA, irrespective of their age, BMI, level of inflammation, duration of complaints and radiographic severity.

Rheumatology 2020;59(9):2207-16.


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