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Clinical Trial
, 79 (3), 328-33

Enalapril Reduces QTc Dispersion in Mild Congestive Heart Failure Secondary to Coronary Artery Disease

Clinical Trial

Enalapril Reduces QTc Dispersion in Mild Congestive Heart Failure Secondary to Coronary Artery Disease

C S Barr et al. Am J Cardiol.


This study was designed to investigate the possible mechanisms whereby enalapril improves cardiac function and mortality in chronic heart failure. We explored potential mechanisms by following 41 patients with early heart failure over the course of 1 year. These patients were randomized in a prospective triple-blind manner to receive either enalapril or placebo. Over the 1 year, repeated measurements were obtained of echocardiographic parameters, glomerular filtration rate, renal blood flow, hematocrit, plasma neurohormones, and QTc dispersion. Echocardiographic parameters improved with enalapril but deteriorated with placebo (cardiac output 4.6 +/- 1.6 to 3.7 +/- 1.5 L/min with placebo, and 4.5 +/- 1.3 to 5.8 +/- 2.0 L/min with enalapril; p <0.01). In contrast, there were no significant changes in renal blood flow (518 +/- 185 to 509 +/- 180 ml/min/1.73 m2 with placebo, and 541 +/- 142 to 504 +/- 162 ml/min/1.73 m2 with enalapril). Glomerular filtration rate changed from 79 +/- 20 to 78 +/- 19 ml/min/1.73 m2 with placebo, and from 85 +/- 21 to 73 +/- 27 ml/min/1.73 m2 with enalapril (p = 0.051). Enalapril reduced hematocrit (0.414 +/- 0.041 to 0.377 +/- 0.040%) significantly more than placebo (0.420 +/- 0.029 to 0.411 +/- 0.023 l/l; p <0.01). In addition, enalapril produced a marked reduction in QTc dispersion (93 +/- 36 to 88 +/- 28 ms with placebo and 93 +/- 35 to 60 +/- 22 ms with enalapril; p <0.05). Thus, enalapril significantly reduced hematocrit and reduced QTc dispersion in early heart failure. Both of these effects, but especially the latter, could be an important mechanism for the reduced mortality seen with angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors in heart failure. In contrast, renal hemodynamics did not parallel either the placebo-induced deterioration in cardiac function or the enalapril-induced improvements in cardiac function.

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