Background: Effects of beta-blockers on the prognosis of the heart failure patients with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF) remain controversial. The aim of this meta-analysis was to determine the impact of beta-blockers on mortality and hospitalization in the patients with HFpEF.
Methods: A search of MEDLINE, EMBASE, and the Cochrane Library databases from 2005 to June 2013 was conducted. Clinical studies reporting outcomes of mortality and/or hospitalization for patients with HFpEF (EF ≥ 40%), being assigned to beta-blockers treatment and non-beta-blockers control group were included.
Results: A total of 12 clinical studies (2 randomized controlled trials and 10 observational studies) involving 21,206 HFpEF patients were included for this meta-analysis. The pooled analysis demonstrated that beta-blocker exposure was associated with a 9% reduction in relative risk for all-cause mortality in patients with HFpEF (95% CI: 0.87 - 0.95; P < 0.001). Whereas, the all-cause hospitalization, HF hospitalization and composite outcomes (mortality and hospitalization) were not affected by this treatment (P=0.26, P=0.97, and P=0.88 respectively).
Conclusions: The beta-blockers treatment for the patients with HFpEF was associated with a lower risk of all-cause mortality, but not with a lower risk of hospitalization. These finding were mainly obtained from observational studies, and further investigations are needed to make an assertion.