The Latest Treatments for Congestive Heart Failure
Written by Bryan Heart cardiologist Steven Krueger, MD
Congestive heart failure is a common and increasing problem. The symptoms of increasing shortness of breath and weakness due to the heart's inability to pump enough blood forward can be disabling and life-threatening for patients.
Current Congestive Heart Failure Treatments
For many years, the therapy we use to treat congestive heart failure has been standardized.
There are two classes of drugs:
- ACE inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB)
These are drugs that end with April such as lisinopril or tan such as valsartan. They are well-tolerated and well-established
- Beta blockers
Their name primarily ends in lol such as metoprolol, carvedilol and bisoprolol
ACE inhibitors, ARB and beta blockers improve survival in heart failure somewhere between 30% and 60%. Bryan Heart is extensively involved in clinical trials and conducted a majority of the original research on these drugs.
New Congestive Heart Failure Treatments
Two important new drugs have been released. These two new drugs are:
Entresto or LCZ696
- Released for the treatment of weak heart muscles; being researches for treatment of stiff heart muscle
- Used instead of the ACE and ARB's medications
- Shown to be superior in terms of preventing hospitalization and improving survival compared to the ACE inhibitors
- Will have an important role in the treatment of heart failure as we go forward
- A drug that slows the heart rate
- Decreases the need for hospitalization in patients who have a fast heart rate
- Use this drug to slow heart rate
These two new drugs are for the treatment of heart failure will have a significant role in selected patients with congestive heart failure in the future.
Bryan Heart is committed to staying at the forefront of congestive heart failure research, treatments and medicine to ensure we provide our community with the best heart care possible. If you have questions related to congestive heart failure or would like to refer a patient, please call 402-483-3333.