Objectives: The Initiation Management Predischarge: Process for Assessment of Carvedilol Therapy in Heart Failure (IMPACT-HF) trial was an investigator-initiated study to evaluate if predischarge carvedilol initiation in stabilized patients hospitalized for heart failure (HF) increased the number of patients treated with beta-blockade at 60 days after randomization without increasing side effects or length of hospital stay.
Background: Beta-blockers are underused in HF. Predischarge initiation may improve the use of evidence-based beta-blockade.
Methods: The IMPACT-HF was a prospective, randomized open-label trial conducted in 363 patients hospitalized for HF. Patients were randomized to carvedilol initiation pre-hospital discharge or to postdischarge initiation (>2 weeks) of beta-blockade at the physicians' discretion. The primary end point of the study was the number of patients treated with beta-blockade at 60 days after randomization. Secondary end points included the number of patients discontinuing beta-blockade, median dose achieved, and a composite of death, rehospitalization, unscheduled visit for HF, or > or =50% increase in oral diuretic, new oral diuretic, or any intravenous therapy with diuretics, inotropes, or other vasoactive agents.
Results: At 60 days 165 patients (91.2%) randomized to predischarge carvedilol initiation were treated with a beta-blocker, compared with 130 patients (73.4%) randomized to initiation postdischarge (p < 0.0001). Predischarge initiation was not associated with an increased risk of serious adverse events. The median length of stay was five days in both groups.
Conclusions: Predischarge initiation of carvedilol in stabilized patients hospitalized for HF improved the use of beta-blockade at 60 days without increasing side effects or length of stay. Predischarge initiation may be one approach to improve beta-blocker use in this population.