Am Heart J. 2021 Jul 17:S0002-8703(21)00182-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2021.07.003. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC) stimulators are a novel class of medications with emerging role in heart failure (HF). The aim of this study is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of oral sGC stimulators in patients with HF with reduced and preserved ejection fraction (HFrEF and HFpEF) by pooling data from all available randomized control trials (RCT).
METHODS: A comprehensive search of electronic databases from 2000-2020 was performed. Seven RCTs, three HFrEF and four HFpEF studies, were identified. The follow-up duration ranged from 1 month to a median of 10.8 months. A random-effects meta-analysis was conducted to summarize the studies.
RESULTS: The study population included 7190 patients: 5707 HFrEF and 1483 HFpEF patients. In HFrEF, oral sGC stimulators reduced the composite incidence of HF hospitalization and cardiovascular death (hazard ratio [HR] 0.87, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.78-0.97; I2= 0%), primarily driven by lower HF hospitalization (HR 0.88, 95% CI 0.78-0.99; I2= 0%). There was no significant reduction in all-cause death in HFrEF (HR 0.95, 95% CI 0.83-1.09; I2=0%). In HFpEF, there were no improvements in Kansas City Cardiomyopathy Questionnaire clinical summary scores (mean difference 0.81, 95% CI -2.16-3.77; I2=72%) or 6-minute walk distance (mean difference 3.34 meters, 95% CI -7.86-14.54; I2=28%). There was no difference in all-cause mortality in HFpEF (HR 1.94, 95% CI 0.92-4.09; I2=0%). Overall, oral sGC stimulators had low medication-related serious adverse events.
CONCLUSION: Oral sGC stimulators are well tolerated in HF and reduce the incidence of HF hospitalization but not cardiovascular death among patients with HFrEF. However, there are no apparent benefits in HFpEF.