WEDNESDAY, April 13, 2022 (HealthDay News) — For patients hospitalized for acute heart failure, treatment with the sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitor empagliflozin produces clinical benefit, according to a study published online April 4 in Circulation to coincide with the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology, held from April 2 to 4 in Washington, D.C.

Mikhail N. Kosiborod, M.D., from Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, Missouri, and colleagues conducted a secondary analysis to examine the impact of the SGLT2 inhibitor empagliflozin on symptoms, physical limitations, and quality of life among patients hospitalized for acute heart failure. A total of 530 participants were randomly assigned to either empagliflozin daily or placebo for 90 days (265 to each). The Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire (KCCQ) was assessed at randomization and at 15, 30, and 90 days.

The researchers found that across the range of KCCQ Total Symptom Scores (TSS), empagliflozin-treated patients experienced greater clinical benefit, with no heterogeneity in treatment effect. The beneficial effects of empagliflozin on health status were seen from 15 days and persisted through 90 days. At 90 days, significantly greater improvements in KCCQ TSS and KCCQ domains of physical limitations, quality of life, clinical summary, and overall summary scores were seen in empagliflozin-treated patients (placebo-adjusted mean differences, 4.45, 4.80, 4.66, 4.85, and 4.40 points, respectively).

“Our results are of clinical importance, because very few therapies have been previously shown to improve symptoms and functional status in the early postdischarge period in individuals hospitalized with acute heart failure,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to biopharmaceutical companies, including Boehringer Ingelheim and Eli Lilly, which manufacture empagliflozin and partially funded the trial.

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