Vernakalant for Cardioversion of Recent-Onset Atrial Fibrillation in the Emergency Department: The SPECTRUM Study

Link to article at PubMed

Cardiology. 2022 Oct 25:1-12. doi: 10.1159/000526831. Online ahead of print.


INTRODUCTION: Intravenous vernakalant is a therapeutic option for symptomatic, recent-onset atrial fibrillation (AF). This secondary analysis from the large SPECTRUM study assessed the safety and effectiveness of vernakalant when used in the emergency department setting (ED group) or in an inpatient hospital setting (non-ED group).

METHODS: This post hoc analysis of the international, observational, post-authorization SPECTRUM study included 1,289 and 720 recent-onset AF episodes in adults in the ED and non-ED groups, respectively. Safety endpoints included the evaluation of pre-defined health outcomes of interest (HOIs) and other serious adverse events (SAEs) during vernakalant treatment and during the first 24 h after the last infusion. Effectiveness endpoints comprised the rate of successful vernakalant cardioversion, the time from the start of the vernakalant infusion to cardioversion, and the length of hospital stay. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics.

RESULTS: The safety profile of vernakalant was similar in the ED and non-ED groups. In the ED group, 12 pre-defined HOIs were reported in 11 patients (0.9%); all but one occurred within 2 h after start of the first infusion. These events comprised nine significant bradycardia cases, of which one was associated with transient hypotension and three with sinus arrest, and 2 cases of atrial flutter with 1:1 conduction. Five other SAEs were reported. All patients with vernakalant-related events recovered without sequelae. No Torsade de Pointes, ventricular fibrillation, or deaths occurred. Successful cardioversion was reported in 67.8% (95% confidence interval: 65.2-70.4) and 66.4% (62.5-70.1) of episodes, with a median time to conversion of 11.0 and 10.0 min in the ED and non-ED groups, respectively. Patients had a median length of hospital stay of 7.4 h and 17.1 h in the ED and non-ED groups, respectively.

CONCLUSION: Intravenous vernakalant was well tolerated with similar cardioversion rates in patients treated in the ED or non-ED setting and does not require admission to a coronary care unit or intensive care unit. First-line treatment with vernakalant could allow an early discharge in patients with recent-onset AF treated in the ED.

PMID:36282074 | DOI:10.1159/000526831

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