Hospitalizations for heart failure (HHF) represent a major health burden, with high rates of early postdischarge rehospitalization and mortality.
To investigate whether aliskiren, a direct renin inhibitor, when added to standard therapy, would reduce the rate of cardiovascular (CV) death or HF rehospitalization among HHF patients.
Design, Setting, and Participants
International, double-blind, placebo-controlled study that randomized hemodynamically stable HHF patients a median 5 days after admission. Eligible patients were 18 years or older with left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) 40% or less, elevated natriuretic peptides (brain natriuretic peptide [BNP] ≥400 pg/mL or N -terminal pro-BNP [NT-proBNP] ≥1600 pg/mL), and signs and symptoms of fluid overload. Patients were recruited from 316 sites across North and South America, Europe, and Asia between May 2009 and December 2011. The follow-up period ended in July 2012.
All patients received 150 mg (increased to 300 mg as tolerated) of aliskiren or placebo daily, in addition to standard therapy. The study drug was continued after discharge for a median 11.3 months.
Main Outcome Measures
Cardiovascular death or HF rehospitalization at 6 months and 12 months.
In total, 1639 patients were randomized, with 1615 patients included in the final efficacy analysis cohort (808 aliskiren, 807 placebo). Mean age was 65 years; mean LVEF, 28%; 41% of patients had diabetes mellitus, mean estimated glomerular filtration rate, 67 mL/min/1.73 m2. At admission and randomization, median NT-proBNP levels were 4239 pg/mL and 2718 pg/mL, respectively. At randomization, patients were receiving diuretics (95.9%), β-blockers (82.5%), angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers (84.2%), and mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists (57.0%). In total, 24.9% of patients receiving aliskiren (77 CV deaths, 153 HF rehospitalizations) and 26.5% of patients receiving placebo (85 CV deaths, 166 HF rehospitalizations) experienced the primary end point at 6 months (hazard ratio [HR], 0.92; 95% CI, 0.76-1.12; P = .41). At 12 months, the event rates were 35.0% for the aliskiren group (126 CV deaths, 212 HF rehospitalizations) and 37.3% for the placebo group (137 CV deaths, 224 HF rehospitalizations; HR, 0.93; 95% CI, 0.79-1.09; P = .36). The rates of hyperkalemia, hypotension, and renal impairment/renal failure were higher in the aliskiren group compared with placebo.
Conclusion and Relevance
Among patients hospitalized for HF with reduced LVEF, initiation of aliskiren in addition to standard therapy did not reduce CV death or HF rehospitalization at 6 months or 12 months after discharge.
clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT00894387