Addition of felodipine to metoprolol vs replacement of metoprolol by felodipine in patients with angina pectoris despite adequate beta-blockade. Results of the Felodipine ER and Metoprolol CR in Angina (FEMINA) Study. Working Group on Cardiovascular Research, The Netherlands (WCN)

Eur Heart J. 1997 Nov;18(11):1755-64. doi: 10.1093/oxfordjournals.eurheartj.a015170.


Aims: The study aimed to compare the addition of felodipine to metoprolol, and of the replacement of metoprolol by felodipine, with continuation of metoprolol, in patients with angina pectoris despite optimal beta-blockade.

Methods and results: The study was double-blind, parallel, randomized and controlled, and comprised 363 patients from 27 outpatient cardiology clinics in the Netherlands. The patients had angina and positive bicycle exercise tests despite optimal beta-blockade (resting heart rate < 65 beats.min-1). Randomization was to three treatment groups: continuation of metoprolol (control), addition of felodipine to metoprolol, and replacement of metoprolol by felodipine. Exercise tests were repeated after 2 and 5 weeks. The main outcome measure was: exercise result after 5 weeks, compared with baseline, between-group comparison of changes vs control. There were no significant differences in exercise duration and onset of chest pain vs control. The addition of felodipine increased time until 1 mm ST depression (43 s, 95% confidence interval 20-65 s), and decreased both ST depression at highest comparable work load (0.46 mm, 95% confidence interval 0.19-0.72), and maximal ST depression (0.49 mm, 95% confidence interval 0.23-0.74). Exercise results after replacement of metoprolol by felodipine were not different from control, apart from a significant increase in rate pressure product. Significantly more patients experienced adverse events in the felodipine monotherapy group.

Conclusion: Combination of metoprolol and felodipine is to be preferred to felodipine monotherapy in patients who have signs and symptoms of myocardial ischaemia despite optimal beta-blockade.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists / administration & dosage*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Angina Pectoris / drug therapy*
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / administration & dosage*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Electrocardiography
  • Exercise Test
  • Felodipine / administration & dosage*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metoprolol / administration & dosage*
  • Middle Aged


  • Adrenergic beta-Antagonists
  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Metoprolol
  • Felodipine