The Follow-Up Serial Infusions of Nesiritide pilot study was designed to assess the safety and tolerability of outpatient serial infusions of nesiritide in 210 patients with decompensated heart failure who were randomly assigned to usual care only or usual care plus weekly infusions of nesiritide at dosages of 0.005 or 0.01 microg/kg/min for 12 weeks. The mean age +/- SD of the entire population was 67 +/- 13 years; 70% were men, and 80% were white. Mean baseline serum creatinine levels were 1.8 +/- 0.7 mg/dl, and mean left ventricular ejection fraction was 0.28 +/- 0.15%. Diabetes mellitus was present in 106 patients (50%), and atrial arrhythmias were present in 100 patients (48%). A totalof 1,645 nesiritide infusions was administered; 11 (< 1%) were discontinued due to an adverse event. All treatment groups had a similar frequency of adverse events and experienced improvements in quality of life. Administration of nesiritide resulted in acute decreases in aldosterone and endothelin-1 concentrations. Although there were no statistically significant differences among groups by outcome, prospectively defined higher risk subgroups demonstrated significant decreases in cardiovascular events. These results demonstrate the safety and feasibility of administering nesiritide in an outpatient setting. Additional studies are needed to determine the effect of outpatient serial infusions of nesiritide on rates of morbidity and mortality in advanced heart failure.
Copyright 2004 Excerpta Medica, Inc.