Digoxin Use Ups Risk of Death in Systolic Heart Failure

Use of Digoxin Ups Risk of Death in Systolic Heart Failure
Use of Digoxin Ups Risk of Death in Systolic Heart Failure

(HealthDay News) – Digoxin therapy was independently associated with increased mortality in patients with systolic heart failure, according to research published in the September issue of Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

James V. Freeman, MD, of Stanford University in California, and colleagues analyzed data from a community-based cohort of adults with newly diagnosed systolic heart failure to assess the effectiveness and safety of digoxin therapy.

The researchers found that digoxin was used in 529 (18%) of 2,891 patients with newly diagnosed systolic heart failure. During a median follow-up of 2.5 years, incident digoxin use was linked with higher rates of death (14.2 vs. 11.3 per 100 person-years) and heart failure hospitalization (28.2 vs. 24.4 per 100 person-years). In multivariable analysis, incident digoxin use was significantly associated with higher mortality (hazard ratio, 1.72; 95% confidence interval, 1.25–2.36), but not increased risk of heart failure hospitalization (hazard ratio, 1.05; 95% confidence interval, 0.82–1.34).

"These findings suggest that the use of digoxin should be re-evaluated for the treatment of systolic heart failure in the modern era," the authors write.

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