Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Anemia drugs does not improve health of anemic heart failure patients

Date:
March 12, 2013
Source:
University of Gothenburg
Summary:
Researchers have found that a commonly used drug to treat anemia in heart failure patients does not improve patients’ health, nor does it reduce their risk of death from heart failure.

Researchers from Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have found that a commonly used drug to treat anemia in heart failure patients does not improve patients' health, nor does it reduce their risk of death from heart failure. Results of the international study were presented at the American College of Cardiology's annual meeting in San Francisco on March 10 and published simultaneously online by The New England Journal of Medicine.

Initiated in 2006, the RED-HF (Reduction of Events With Darbepoetin Alfa in Heart Failure) trial involved 2,278 anemic heart failure patients at 453 sites in 33 countries.

Patients were randomly given either darbepoetin alfa or placebo. In the darbepoetin alfa group, 50.7 percent of the patients experienced death from any cause or hospitalization for worsening heart failure. In the placebo group, 49.5 percent of the patients experienced similar clinical outcomes.

The trial was funded by Amgen, the maker of darbepoetin alfa (trade name: Aranesp).

"This landmark study provides answers to caregivers who treat patients with heart failure complicated by anemia," says James Young, M.D., cardiologist and Chair of the Cleveland Clinic Endocrinology & Metabolism Institute, and co-investigator of the RED-HF trial. "Our findings do not support the use of darbepoetin alfa to treat anemic heart failure patients."

Anemia, the lack of red blood cells, is a common and serious problem in people who suffer from heart failure. It can lead to worse quality of life, higher rates of hospitalization and death. Treatment options have focused on correcting anemia with the use of intravenous iron or drugs that stimulate red blood cells.

"The benefits of erythropoietin-stimulating agents (ESAs) such as darbepoetin alfa to treat patients with heart failure and anemia have been questioned due to contradictory research findings," says Karl Swedberg, M.D., Ph.D., a senior professor at the Sweden-based Department of Medicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, and co-investigator of the RED-HF trial.

"Our study results show that the use of darbepoetin alfa to stimulate the production of red blood cells is an ineffective treatment for patients with heart failure and anemia."

According to the study, researchers found that darbepoetin alfa treatment led to an early and sustained increase in hemoglobin compared with placebo. However, darbepoetin alfa treatment did not reduce the risk of death from any cause or hospitalization from heart failure.

Findings suggest that hemoglobin is a marker of poor prognosis in heart failure, rather than a therapeutic target. There were no new safety findings identified in the study. However, researchers observed an increased risk of thrombosis in the darbepoetin alfa group.

Researchers note that further research is needed to identify treatment options for this patient population.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Gothenburg. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Karl Swedberg, James B. Young, Inder S. Anand, Sunfa Cheng, Akshay S. Desai, Rafael Diaz, Aldo P. Maggioni, John J.V. McMurray, Christopher O'Connor, Marc A. Pfeffer, Scott D. Solomon, Yan Sun, Michal Tendera, Dirk J. van Veldhuisen. Treatment of Anemia with Darbepoetin Alfa in Systolic Heart Failure. New England Journal of Medicine, 2013; 130310164504007 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1214865

Cite This Page:

University of Gothenburg. "Anemia drugs does not improve health of anemic heart failure patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 March 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130312092436.htm>.
University of Gothenburg. (2013, March 12). Anemia drugs does not improve health of anemic heart failure patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130312092436.htm
University of Gothenburg. "Anemia drugs does not improve health of anemic heart failure patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/03/130312092436.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Idaho Boy Helps Brother With Disabilities Complete Triathlon

Newsy (July 23, 2014) An 8-year-old boy helped his younger brother, who has a rare genetic condition that's confined him to a wheelchair, finish a triathlon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Stone Fruit Listeria Scare Causes Sweeping Recall

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The Wawona Packing Company has issued a voluntary recall on the stone fruit it distributes due to a possible Listeria outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Huge Schizophrenia Study Finds Dozens Of New Genetic Causes

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The 83 new genetic markers could open dozens of new avenues for schizophrenia treatment research. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Head Concerned About a Post-Antibiotic Era

CDC Head Concerned About a Post-Antibiotic Era

AP (July 22, 2014) Sounding alarms about the growing threat of antibiotic resistance, CDC Director Tom Frieden warned Tuesday if the global community does not confront the problem soon, the world will be living in a devastating post-antibiotic era. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

More Coverage


Anemia Drug Does Not Improve Health of Anemic Heart Failure Patients, Study Shows

Mar. 11, 2013 Researchers have found that a commonly used drug to treat anemia in heart failure patients -- darbepoetin alfa -- does not improve patients' health, nor does it reduce their risk of death from ... read more
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins