Study shows beta blockers may not benefit heart attack patients
Beta blockers, a powerful group of medicines which decrease the activity of the heart and lower blood pressure, don’t help heart attack patients, a study has found.Updated: Jul 03, 2017 15:55 IST
Heart attack patients, who did not have heart failure, should not be prescribed beta blockers as a study finds that they may not live longer with these medicines.
The findings indicated that heart attack patients, who did not have heart failure did not live any longer after being given beta blockers ---yet around 95% of patients, who fall into this category end up on the medication.
The research raises the possibility that the drugs are being over prescribed, and may burden patients and the NHS with unnecessary medicine costs.
According to researchers, there may be no mortality advantage associated with the prescription of beta-blockers for patients with heart attack, but not heart failure.
Beta blockers are a powerful group of medicines which decrease the activity of the heart and lower blood pressure.
They are commonly prescribed after a heart attack, but they can have unwanted side-effects for some patients such as dizziness and tiredness.
The University of Leeds in England focused on those patients with heart attack, who did not have heart failure but were still prescribed beta blockers.
The team analysed more than 1,79,000 patients, who had a heart attack without heart failure.
When investigators compared death rates within a year of the patients suffering a heart attack, they found no statistical difference between those who’d been prescribed the drugs and those who had not.
Lead investigator Dr Marlous Hall said, “If you look at the patients, who had a heart attack but not heart failure -- there was no difference in survival rates between those who had been prescribed beta blockers and those that had not.”
“This work would have implications for personalising medications after a heart attack,” Dr Hall added.
The study is published in the journal of the American College of Cardiology.
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First Published: May 30, 2017 17:01 IST